Autonomous driving technology provider
missed first-quarter sales expectations, but the company reiterated its full-year sales guidance.
Luminar (ticker: LAZR) stock slid about 8% in after-hours trading, shortly after results were released. The stock dropped 9% in regular trading Thursday on a brutal day for markets. The
Dow Jones Industrial Average
fell 3.6% and 3.1%, respectively.
Results, however, look OK. Luminar reported first-quarter sales of about $6.9 million. Wall Street was looking for $8.3 million, according to FactSet. But the company says it is on pace to generate more than $40 million in 2022 sales, just as analysts project.
The company lost 16 cents a share in the quarter, slightly steeper than the 13-cent loss expected by analysts. But Luminar is still a young company, and earnings don’t matter all that much.
There are also some business developments that appear positive. The company is now a partner with
(7201.Japan), a mass market auto maker that is ready to adopt Luminar’s lidar technology.
Lidar is, essentially, laser-based radar and is a key enabling technology for self-driving cars. Lidar helps a vehicle see objects far down the road.
Luminar also completed an acquisition of a diode company, bringing some of its laser technology in-house.
The answer to why the stock is so weak might just be the wild state of the stock market. Companies get punished for missing Street estimates in a volatile market, even if the longer-term outlook is unchanged.
Through Thursday trading, Luminar stock is down about 34% year to date. The
Defiance Next Gen SPAC Derived ETF
(SPAK), which holds stock in many startups, is off about 26% year to date.
Rising interest rates, inflation, and volatile trading have sapped investors’ willingness to hold stock in high-growth startups.
Write to Al Root at firstname.lastname@example.org