Shares of C3.ai plummeted 20% in extended trading on Wednesday after software company executives set out to make smaller revenue gains next year than Wall Street expected.
Executives forecast first-quarter tax revenue of $ 63 million to $ 67 million and fiscal year revenue of $ 308 million to $ 316 million in their fourth-quarter earnings report Wednesday afternoon . According to FactSet, analysts had forecast first-quarter revenue of $ 71.6 million and annual sales of $ 333.9 million.
This forecast suggests a sequential decline in revenue from the fourth fiscal quarter and a sharp decline in annual revenue. C3 posted fourth-quarter tax revenue of $ 72.3 million and annual sales of $ 252.8 million, up 38% year-over-year; the company’s forecast suggests that revenue growth will slow to 25% or less next year.
In Wednesday’s announcement, executives did not provide any reason for the expected fall in growth, but focused on fourth-quarter performance.
“Our good fiscal performance 2022 further strengthens our position as a world leader in the business AI market and lays the groundwork for growth in fiscal year 2023,” CEO Thomas Siebel said in a statement.
The software company posted a loss of $ 58.2 million, or 55 cents a share, in the fourth quarter, worse than a loss of 24 cents a share a year ago. After adjusting for share-based compensation and related taxes, C3 recorded a loss of 21 cents per share, below an adjusted loss of 15 cents per share a year ago.
Analysts, on average, expected a tight loss of 29 cents per share on sales of $ 71.3 million, according to FactSet.
C3 has struggled to maintain the high stock prices imposed around its initial public offering, which took place in December 2020. The IPO shares were priced at $ 42 each and almost tripled from times in their early days of public negotiation, but they have sunk. from and closed Wednesday at $ 18.55. So far this year, shares have fallen 40.6%, as the S&P 500 SPX index,
has fallen by 13.3%.