Local Tech Wire

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – Cree (Nasdaq: CREE) set another record for revenues in its most recent quarter as demand for its light-emitting diodes drove income to $246.6 million.

Not only does the quarter represent a 79 percent surge over the same April-June period a year ago, it also set a record for the firm.

Revenues jumped 13 percent from the opening quarter of this year.

Excluding various expenses, Cree’s earnings for the quarter were 55 cents per share, up nearly 270 percent from the 11-cent share profit a year ago. That total topped Wall Street analysts’ projections of 51 cents.

For its fiscal year that ended in June, Cree reported income of $867 million, up 53 percent from a year ago.

Net income, meanwhile, more than quadrupled to $152 million.

Cree announced its earnings after the markets closed.

Cree reported record revenues and profits for the first quarter of the year, which is its third fiscal reporting period.

Revenues soared 78 percent to $234 million compared to a year ago.

Profits, meanwhile, jumped to $44.6 million from $4 million for the same quarter in 2009.

Despite the record revenues and profits, Cree shares were hammered in after-hours trading immediately following the earnings report. Traders drove down the stock more than $6 or more than 10 percent.

At 8 p.m. Tuesday, shares traded at $63.31, down $5.65 ot 8.2 percent.

Cree closed regular trading at $68.96, down 3.7 percent or $2.63.

Looking ahead to the next quarter ending Sept. 26, Cree estimated that revenue would increase to between $270 million and $280 million with a net revenue target of between $52 million and $56 million. Minus certain expenses, profits are expected to increase to between 56 cents and 59 cents a share.

Cree’s revenue projections fell short of analysts’ target of $284 million, Barron’s noted.

“Fiscal 2010 was a great year for Cree and the LED lighting revolution,” said Chuck Swoboda, Cree’s chairman and CEO, in a statement. “We made good progress building momentum in our business and delivering on our four key objectives for the fiscal year. Entering fiscal 2011, we are focused on extending our leadership position while we build the scale, cost structure and channels to win in the market.”