Los Angeles Business Journal

Quarter Mixed at Tutor Perini

By Deborah Crowe, James Rufus Koren Thursday, November 1, 2012

Tutor Perini Corp. late Thursday reported a 25 percent increase in third-quarter profit. That beat the Wall Street consensus, although revenue was lower than expected.

However, executives said the hurricane that devastated the East Coast last week could lead to significant business opportunities in the near future for the Sylmar civil and building construction company.

After the markets closed, Tutor Perini reported net income of $42.6 million (88 cents a share), compared with $35.5 million (74 cents) in the same period a year earlier. Revenue fell 6 percent to $1.1 billion.

Excluding a $16.8 million tax benefit received in the third quarter, which was related to goodwill asset impairment charges taken in the second quarter, adjusted profit was 54 cents a share. Analysts surveyed by Capital IQ on average expected adjusted profit of 49 cents a share on revenue of $1.15 billion.

At the end of the quarter the backlog of uncompleted construction work stood at $5.6 billion. Additions to new work during the third quarter included a $181 million hospitality and gaming project in California, a $73 million educational facility in New York and a $63 million stadium renovation project in Mississippi.

During a Thursday conference call, investors asked Chief Executive Ronald Tutor if the recent storm on the East Coast had set back any Tutor Perini projects, specifically a condo development in Manhattan. Tutor said he has not been able to reach the company’s offices in suburban New York but that he plans to visit the city next week.

“I’ve been trying to get our New York office and our guys since Monday, and I can’t get anyone,” he said. “I’m planning to go there, airports allowing me, Monday or Tuesday to see for myself.”

But Tutor said that even if Hurricane Sandy causes setbacks for existing projects, it should also provide a big opportunity for the company.

“There is literally tens of billions of dollars of repair work that’s going to be required that we think we should be a major recipient of,” he said. “We own the largest electrical contractor in the city and there are electrical power issues and wiring issues throughout the transit system as well as virtually everywhere.”

Shares earlier closed up 7 cents, or less than 1 percent, to $10.21 on the New York Stock Exchange.