4 Things to Watch When Sierra Wireless Inc. Reports Earnings

It's that time againSierra Wireless investors. Shares of your favorite Internet of Things pure play are down nearly 50% year to date, but that could all change when the company announces second-quarter results later this week. So, what should you expect?

Here four things I'll be watching when Sierra Wireless' report hits the wires.

Was guidance conservative (again)?First, note after its solid first-quarter report in May, Sierra Wireless disappointed Wall Street by issuing lighter-than-expected guidance. Specifically, Sierra Wireless told investors to expect first-quarter revenue of $153 million to $156 million and earnings per share of $0.21 to $0.24. At the time, analysts were modeling earnings of $0.25 per share and revenue of $157 million.

But Sierra Wireless' Q1 results did come in well above its own previous guidance. And the same thing happened with its fourth quarter 2014 results in February when the stock plunged 12% in a single day following itsstrong quarter but another "weak" outlook.

Analysts have since adjusted their expectations accordingly, with consensus estimates calling for second-quarter revenue and earnings of $155.2 million and $0.23 per share, respectively -- both of which are slightly above the midpoints of Sierra Wireless' guidance ranges. But given Sierra Wireless' propensity for underpromising and overdelivering, I won't be surprised if this quarter brings more of the same.

Sequential improvement in enterpriseNext, while Sierra Wireless' OEM solutions segment saw strong growth in Q1, with revenue increasing 25% year over year to $133 million, its enterprise solutions business lagged, with revenue growing just 16% over the same period to $17.4 million. According to Sierra Wireless CEO Jason Cohenour, part of that can be chalked up to typical seasonal weakness. But even putting seasonality aside, the enterprise business performed well below the company's expectation. As a result, Cohenour reminded investors of the "vast" opportunity Sierra Wireless is poised to enjoy in the enterprise space and promised, "[W]e are committed to achieving significantly higher growth."

More specifically -- and helped in part by enterprise-centric acquisitions like Wireless Maingate late last year -- Cohenour suggested the enterprise segment should make sequential improvements in each of the remaining quarters of 2015. What's more, enterprise should see stronger growth over the longer term thanks to a recent product portfolio refresh, as well as targeted investments in sales capacity.

RF component supply constraints should begin to abateAnother weakness last quarter stood out in the form of RF component supply constraints, which affected revenue by between $1 million and $2 million, and also resulted in a roughly $400,000 increase in costs of goods sold as Sierra Wireless had to "design out" the components in short supply, then "design in" more expensive alternatives.

According to Cohenour during the call, the second quarter is expected to see a similar impact to revenue and costs -- which explains some of its previous light guidance -- but should also largely get Sierra Wireless through the worst of these supply constraints. After that, Cohenour says, the situation should begin to subside in the second half, then be completely resolved by the end of the year.

Looking forwardSpeaking of which, expect Sierra Wireless to provide some color on the third quarter, at the very least in the form of guidance on revenue, operating expenses, and net earnings. Analysts, on average, are modeling third-quarter revenue of $163.7 million, up 14.3% from the same year-ago period, and 25% growth in earnings per share to $0.30.

Of course, at this point it would shock no one if Sierra Wireless came out with a conservative outlook once again. But if all goes as planned and Sierra Wireless puts the pieces together with continued strength in its OEM solutions, improvement in the Enterprise business, and resolution of RF component shortages, the second half of 2015 could serve as a delightful exercise in contrast to the first.

The article 4 Things to Watch When Sierra Wireless Inc. Reports Earnings originally appeared on Fool.com.

Steve Symington has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Sierra Wireless. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Copyright 1995 - 2015 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.