If Vitesse Semiconductor (PINK:VTSS, news, filings) were human, it would have been a medical miracle. The company, which manufactures a variety of semiconductor devices that go into equipment built by the likes of Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE:ALU, news, filings), Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO, news, filings), and Huawei, has been in a coma and left for dead by Wall Street for two years now. The story dates back to the stock option backdating scandals of a couple years ago. Remember those wonderful days, when scandals involving theft of a mere few million dollars seemed so important? Well, much of Vitesses’s top management went down in the flames, previous financials were disavowed, lawsuits and investigations started flying, and the company looked like it was about to implode. It was uglier than most, and then everything went dark for a long time. They still talked to investors but didn’t give out minor details like profits or losses.
On New Year’s Eve, Vitesse finally woke up and filed all three 10-Q’s and its 10-K for fiscal 2008 which ended Sept 30, catching up with the FCC. And not only did they wake up, they got out of bed and walked all the way to a profit for 2008 of $0.07 per share, largely on the back of a $10M licensing agreement to a third party that hit in the third quarter. A rare moment of good news this winter, really. I wonder how long it will take them to get re-listed on the Nasdaq.
And yet, one has to shake one’s head about the unlucky timing. Here is Vitesse, left for dead yet now standing up and looking almost healthy as of the end of September, and right behind the poor guy is a financial tsunami that is hitting its customers and will surely do some damage to them as well. Ah well, at least this time it’s someone else’s fault.
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