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GCEC Chooses Itron Metering Solution

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Itron, Inc. (ITRI) declared that Grayson-Collin Electric Cooperative (:GCEC) has selected the former’s advanced metering solution utilizing cellular communications to enable energy efficiency, reliability and resource conservation.  

The cellular solution will enable GCEC to strategically deploy a secure and scalable system to optimize power delivery at minimum cost. GCEC has also contracted to use Itron services to manage and maintain the entire solution including its core business operations.

GCEC which serves about 40,000 members in Grayson and Collin counties recently completed a successful trial of Itron’s cellular solution, which prompted it to go ahead for full deployment.

Itron will install 40,000 cellular meters over the next five to seven years. With Itron’s cellular solution, GCEC will use the existing cellular networks to deliver grid intelligence and support smart grid applications. GCEC will also be able to test and validate the performance helping consumers, businesses and utilities.

Itron, which belongs to the electrical equipment industry along with National Instruments Corp. (NATI), Agilent Technologies Inc. (A) and Ametek Inc. (AME), posted second-quarter 2013 adjusted earnings of 58 cents per share, down 50% year over year due to lower revenues and the consequent decrease in gross profit. Adjusted earnings fell short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 60 cents.

For full-year 2013, Itron expects revenues in the range of $1.95–$2 billion. The company forecasts earnings in the band of $2.25–$2.55 per share. Annual gross margin is expected at around 32%.

Itron will benefit from continued focus on lowering costs by reducing capital expenditures and working capital balance. A strong backlog, new contracts, flexible business operation and expansion in emerging market will drive long-term growth.

However, the company continues to face a more challenged competitive environment in the U.S. for water and gas metering markets as increasing number of vendors are focusing on these segments to offset softer electric AMI markets. The shift in product mix and lower volume will act as headwinds in the upcoming quarters.

Liberty Lake, WA-based Itron Inc., along with its subsidiaries, is one of the principal technology providers to the energy and water industries worldwide. It produces electricity, gas, water, and heat meters, data collection and utility software solutions along with various other associated metering products for residential, commercial and industrial, and transmission and distribution customers.

Itron currently retains a short-term Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell).

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