Agilent Technologies Profit Soars in 4Q on Higher Demand

Shortly after hitting a 52-week high, Agilent Technologies (NYSA:A) revealed a stronger-than-expected 144% increase in first-quarter profit, driven by higher across-the-board revenue.

The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company posted net income of $193 million, or 54 cents a share, nearly double the $79 million, or 22 cents a share, from the same quarter last year.

Excluding one-time items, the company earned 60 cents a share, ahead of average analyst estimates polled by Thomson Reuters of 57 cents.

Revenue for the provider bio-analytical and electronic measurement solutions was $1.52 billion, up 25% compared with $1.2 billion a year ago, marginally beating the Street’s view of $1.55 billion.

“We had an excellent start to the year as we continued to demonstrate the strength of our product portfolio,” Agilent CEO Bill Sullivan said in a statement. “All regions throughout the world posted double-digit organic revenue growth.”

Earnings were fueled by a 33% increase in orders to $1.63 billion, up from $1.52 billion a year ago. Electronic measurement, chemical analysis and life sciences revenues were up 23%, 43% and 19%, respectively.

Looking ahead, Sullivan said the company is poised to take advantage of market opportunities as the global economic continues to recover.

Agilent anticipates 2011 earnings in the range of $2.53 to $2.63 a share, better than Wall Street estimates of $2.50 a share.