• FiberCore Inc. closed on a $6 million private placement of 5 percent convertible subordinated debentures to institutional investors, it says. The company has the option to increase the dollar amount to $9 million. FiberCore received $5 million at closing, with another $1 million coming with the filing of a registration statement. The funds will go to the company's capital expenditures, including capacity expansions in Germany, and other corporate purposes. …
• Testing equipment company Teradyne Inc. showed a $112.6 million net loss, or 63 cents a diluted share, on sales on $20.2 million in Q4, it says. The company reported $132 million, or 74 cents a diluted share, in net income on sales of $821.7 million for the same period a year ago. The numbers include special charges related to excess inventory, leases and workforce reductions. The company reported $127.5 million in Q4 net orders, compared with $651.6 million a year ago.
For the year, Teradyne's sales fell to $1.4 billion, down dramatically from $3 billion in 2000. It also showed a 2001 net loss of $202 million, or $1.15 a diluted share, versus a $453.6 million, or $2.51 a share, net income a year ago. Chair George Chamillard called 2001 "sobering," although the Q4 results were in line with its guidance, and said Q1 2002 earnings and revenue will fall in the $200 million to $250 million range, with losses around 40 cents to 50 cents a share, excluding charges. …
• Williams Communications Chair and CEO Howard Janzen released a letter to shareholders expressing "frustration" at Standard and Poor's decision to downgrade its publicly traded debt.
Yesterday, S&P lowered Williams's corporate credit rating and senior secured bank loan from B to CCC+, and lowered Williams' senior unsecured debt from CCC+ to CCC-. It also lowered its preferred stock ratings from CCC- to CC, and placed Willaims on CreditWatch negative. The firm noted "increased concerns that WCG may be challenged to adequately fund its business plan beyond 2002," or raise the cash to fund operations. "Estimated cash and bank availability of $1.5 billion at the end of 2001 will have to fund operations and debt service into beyond 2002 because WCG is unlikely to generate free cash flow in the near term," it says.
"While the downgrade is in keeping with (S&P's) cautious view of our industry, it has no impact on the cost of our debt," said Janzen, who also updated investors on the company's business plan and financial growth, noting that the company continues to pursue its business plan. "Our success will not be impacted by S&P's downgrade and, as such, we will prove wrong those who doubt both Williams Communications and our industry," he says.
• Vyyo Inc.'s Q4 net losses narrowed to $3.2 million, or 9 cents a share, from Q3 2001 losses of $11 million, or 30 cents a share. The fixed wireless systems maker reported $3.3 million in net revenue in Q4.
Vyyo finished the year with $49 million, or $1.33 a share, in net losses on net revenue of $8.2 million. It also showed $84.1 million in cash, cash equivalents and short-term investment balances.
• Eagle Broadband doubled the number of shares in its stock buyback program from 1 million to 2 million. The shares will be held for issuance in connection with the company's employee stock and other plans, or may be cancelled, it says. Eagle had about 63 million common shares outstanding as of Jan. 14.