Usually when a company is private, we get less information or even no information at all. But there is the rare occasion when not having to worry as much about the timing of disclosures lets a private company give us information that a public company wouldn't - at least not yet. Dan Caruso over on Bear On Business gave us all a bit of unexpected early information on the performance of Zayo Group (news, filings) yesterday as part of a series of blog posts detailing the company's goals in 2009, and in an interview with the Boulder Daily Camera. While the details are approximate, they are nevertheless encouraging.
Fourth quarter revenues of $47M and EBITDA of $13M seem pretty respectable. Sales in the quarter and in December were apparently both solid, in spite of the downturn, and 2009 growth is seen in the double digits. In other words, the economic winds may be fierce, but bandwidth - at least Zayo's corner of it - is still making progress against it. The company is targeting 32-34% EBITDA margins, which would be quite respectable, not to mention make them quite safe from the economic downturn. Should they meet their goals, it would seem as if 2009 results would look something like $200M revenue and $65M EBITDA. Not bad for a company assembled out of a dozen overlooked spare parts in just 18 months!
My thanks to Dan and Zayo for the datapoint because they really didn't have to give it to us. Over the next few days we have the Citi EMT conference, and many companies in the sector will give presentations. However, I doubt we will hear much new information in those talks, just lots of caution. What Zayo is saying, and that I hope we hear a few echos of, is that the wind may be fierce but the ground remains stable and the footing adequate. The market, of course, thinks we are already falling into the abyss. Well perhaps everyone else is, we will see.
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