Shutdowns related to the COVID-19 pandemic drove Indianapolis-based machine tool manufacturer Hurco Cos. Inc. to its largest quarterly loss since 2002.
For the fiscal quarter ended April 30, Hurco lost $3.9 million loss, or 58 cents per share; compared with a profit of $5.3 million, or 76 cents per share, during the same period a year earlier, the company reported Monday.
The company reported $37.1 million in sales and service fees during the quarter, a drop of 47% from the first quarter of 2019. The drop was especially pronounced in Hurco’s European market, where sales and service fees fell 61%. The company’s Americas and Asia Pacific markets dropped 30% and 35%, respectively.
COVID-19 “has had a significant impact on our business and industry,” Hurco CEO Michael Doar said in a written statement. “Although the mandatory stay-at-home or shelter orders in many jurisdictions permitted our local operations to continue as an essential business or a supplier to critical infrastructure industries (or otherwise with remote work capabilities), many of our customers experienced significant disruptions in their business operations and normal purchasing cycles.”
Doar said the company implemented “proactive cost reduction plans and delays in non-critical discretionary spending or capital expenditures,” which kept the company’s balance sheet strong and “…allowed us to navigate this fiscal quarter fairly well—and allowed us to continue to return value to shareholders by maintaining our dividend policy and share repurchase program, even in the most extreme of circumstances.”
This was the second straight quarterly loss for Hurco, which posted a $893,000 loss for the quarter ended Jan. 31. Before that, the company had not experienced a loss since the fourth quarter of 2010, when it lost $1.2 million.
This quarter’s loss was the company’s largest since the second quarter of 2002, when lost $4.2 million.
Shares in Hurco were trading at $32.87 each late Monday morning, down 4.7% from Friday’s close. Hurco shares have traded between $20.39 and $39.38 over the past 52 weeks.