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Utah's EnergySolutions reports higher 2Q profit, lower revenue

Published August 8, 2012 6:04 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

EnergySolutions Inc., the nuclear waste company headquartered in Salt Lake City, reported revenues and income were up for the most recent quarter while its CEO said the firm would continue cutting costs and consider selling some of its assets.

Revenues for the second quarter of its 2012 fiscal year were $392.6 million, or 2.7 percent less than the $403.7 million recorded in the same quarter a year ago. Net income for the same quarter was $5.4 million, or 6 cents per share. A year ago, EnergySolutions reported second-quarter net income of $500,000, or 1 cent per share.

The latest results beat analyst estimates by about 2 cents per share.

In a conference call with investors Wednesday, David Lockwood, president and chief executive officer, said the company will focus on the core businesses of processing and disposal of low-level nuclear waste, with a strategy of growing by partnering with others companies instead trying to expand on its own.

"We're in too many businesses in too many places," Lockwood told investors, while adding that EnergySolutions could sell off some of its units in order to concentrate on more profitable ones.

"We're confident, with focus, we can grow our company," he said.

EnergySolutions' board of directors named Lockwood CEO on June 11, following a management shakeup that saw the resignation of Val John Christensen as the company's top executive and the replacement of William Benz as chief financial officer. The new CFO is Greg Wood.

The company's stock price dropped by half after the move ­­— the second management overhaul in two years — and hasn't recovered since then.

But the new managers, in place just 58 days, said they are determined to improve the bottom line by trimming costs, reducing debt and setting the stage for long-term growth by raising additional capital.

"In order to focus our company," Lockwood said, "we will consider asset sales."

That includes the possibility of EnergySolutions selling off its nuclear cleanup business in the United Kingdom, the source of significant profits over the past few years. The company acknowledged last month it has entertained offers for that business.

Meanwhile, Lockwood described the company's mile-square disposal site for low-level radioactive waste in Utah as one EnergySolutions most important assets and a foundation for its future growth.

Volumes of waste shipped to the site have fallen. But, coupled with the company's large waste-processing plant in Tennessee and its expertise in shipping waste, prospects look good going forward as 12 more nuclear plants representing about $4 billion in business await decommissioning, Lockwood said.