ATLANTA … Telecommunications industry woes hammered Scientific-Atlanta (NYSE: SFA), which has reported a 33 percent drop in sales and a 69 percent falloff in earnings for its 2002 fiscal year.

The company, which makes equipment for cable television and telecommunications applications, earned $104.4 million. or 66 cents a share, in 2002, down from $333.7 million, or $1.99 a share, a year ago. Sales for the recently completed fiscal year were $1.7 billion, and new bookings stood at $1.2 billion, down 55 percent from a year ago. Backlog at fiscal year end was $410.6 million, a decrease of 54 percent from the fourth quarter of the previous year.

During the fourth quarter, Scientific-Atlanta recorded after-tax bad debt expense of $55.2 million due to the bankruptcy of Adelphia Communications. As a result of the bankruptcy of Adelphia in June, Scientific-Atlanta de-booked all orders with Adelphia, totaling $199.8 million. The company concluded that the timing and size of future shipments could not be determined with certainty. Scientific-Atlanta has reached a verbal agreement with Adelphia and its advisors on the terms under which the company and Adelphia will do business going forward.

Fourth-quarter sales of $390.1 million decreased 37 percent from the $619.6 million sales volume of a year ago. percent from the same period a year ago. Including the Adelphia writeoff expenses and $4.8 million in after-tax charges related to corporate restructurings and adjustments of equity investments, the company reported a loss for the quarter of $15.7 million, or 10 cents per share. This compares with net earnings of $73.4 million, or 44 per share in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2001. Excluding special items, fourth-quarter earnings were $44.5 million, or 28 cents per share.

Scientific-Atlanta: www.sciatl.com