Shares in Batm Advanced Communications (LON:BVC) collapsed this morning after the telecoms systems group reported major disruption to its figures during the first four months of 2010 caused by declining orders from one of its major OEM customers. Nevertheless, the company insisted that from April onwards it had begun to see positive signs in the business and was “cautiously optimistic” of meeting its revenue targets for the full year. It noted that profitability in the second half of the year would be similar to that of the second half of 2009.

Total revenues in the first four months of 2010 were $36.0m, compared with $38.9m in the same period of 2009. BATM said it was now on course to breakeven during the first half of the year compared to the first half of last year when it delivered a pre-tax profit of $12.9m on sales of $69.0m. Shares in the group plummeted by 38% to 23p during the morning.

BATM blamed the falling figures on a “significant decline” in revenues from a major OEM channel in its Telecom division. However it said the fall had been somewhat offset by growth in other areas. During the four months, the sales mix was 63% from the Telecoms division and 37% from the Medical division. During April 2010, total revenues for the month were equal to those in April 2009, despite continuing weakness from the OEM customer and substantial weakness in European economies.

Elsewhere, BATM’s gross margin decreased by 7% during the first four months of 2010 when compared to the same period in 2009, due to the change in the sales mix, caused by the reduced revenues from the major OEM customer. The gross margin in the Medical division increased above the margin in 2009, a trend which is expected to continue.

On a brighter note, BATM said its balance sheet remained “very strong” with cash balances at the end of April standing at $64.5m. It pointed out that since the end of the period, high customer activity in the US reported earlier in the year had started to convert into orders and that it had signed two licensing agreements with new customers, including an agreement reported in April 2010 with a leading semi-conductor manufacturer, to license some of its mobile backhaul technology. Revenues from the licensing will begin in…

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