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Itron Turns to Profit in Q3, Revenues Up 12%; Revises FY08 Guidance - Update

Wednesday, Itron, Inc. (ITRI), a metering products maker, reported a profit for the third-quarter, compared with a loss in the year-ago quarter. Total revenues for the quarter grew 12%. The company has also revised its guidance for the full year.

The Liberty Lake, Washington-based company's net income for the third-quarter was $7.7 million or $0.21 per share, compared with a net loss of $3.4 million, or $0.11 per share in the year-ago quarter.

Net income for the quarter excluding items that also excludes amortization of debt fees was $29.9 million or $0.81 per share, an increase from $21.2 million or $0.65 per share in the year-ago quarter.

Analysts surveyed by First Call/Thomson Financial expected the company to report earnings of $0.77 per share.

Total revenues for the quarter rose 12% to $485 million, from $434 million, reported in the prior-year quarter. The Street expected revenues of $470.98 million for the quarter

On a segmental basis, INA revenues for the third-quarter grew to $160 million, from $142.7 million, while Actaris revenues increased to 324.7 million from $291.3 million in the previous-year comparable period.

For the nine-month period net income was $23.75 million or $0.68 per share, compared with net loss of $20 million or $0.69 per share in the year-ago period.

Net income for the nine-month period, excluding items for the period, which also excludes amortization of debt fees, was $92.7 million or $2.65 per share, up from $60.8 million or $1.99 per share in the prior-year period.

Total revenues for the nine-month period surged 50% to $1.48 billion, from $984 million, in the year-ago period.

On segmental basis, INA revenues rose 11% to $475 million from $426.4 million, while Actaris revenues exceeded $1 billion from $557 million in the prior-year same period. Actaris was acquired on April 18, 2007.

Looking forward, Itron revised its adjusted earnings guidance for the full year and now expects non-GAAP earnings in the range of $3.35 per share - $3.45 per share, compared to previous guidance range of $3.35 per share - $3.50 per share. Revenues are now anticipated between $1.91 billion to $1.93 billion, compared to previous guidance of $1.91 billion to $1.95 billion for the full year.

Analysts currently expect the company to report earnings of $3.44 per share on revenues of $1.94 billion for fiscal year 2008.

ITRI ended Wednesday's trading at $50.83, up $3.30 or 6.94% on a volume of 1.7 million shares on Nasdaq. In after-hours trade, the stock lost $1.22 or 2.40%, at $49.61.

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