Agrify Corporation (Nasdaq: AGFY) up-ticked in early trading Monday despite the company posting results far below analysts’ expectations — showing the waning demand for hydroponics amid the economic slowdown.
The data-forward cannabis cultivator delivered its financial results for the first quarter ending June 30, 2022. Agrify delivered approximately $19.3 million in total revenue during the period, a gain of 63.5% versus the same period last year — though missing the Yahoo Finance Average analyst estimate for revenues of $26.1 million.
The company also reported a second-quarter net loss of $93.4 million versus a net loss of $9.4 million in the same period last year. The earnings were for a loss of $3.51 per share, below analysts’ loss estimates of $0.43 cents a share.
“The second quarter was challenging for the entire cannabis industry,” said CEO Raymond Chang. “Despite this difficult business environment, which has impacted our recent performance and altered our outlook for the remainder of 2022, we are actively taking steps to adapt to the new market realities.
Agrify said that its operating expenses totaled $93.1 million for the second quarter versus $6.0 million in the prior year period. Operating expenses were $107.1 million for the year-to-date period versus $11.9 million in the prior year-to-date period.
“The comparative 2022 increases in both our second quarter and year-to-date operating expenses are largely attributable to impairment charges of $69.9 million, increases to reserves associated with accounts receivable, loans receivable, inventory obsolescence, and warranty costs, increases in depreciation and amortization, and changes in contingent consideration related to the fair value estimates associated with ongoing acquisition-related earnout arrangements,” the company said.
Agrify is lowering its guidance for 2022 revenue, “Given the current difficult macro business environment, and specifically a drastic downturn in the cannabis industry,” it said in a preliminary release statement last week. Agrify’s new forecasted range for revenue is $70 million–$75 million, far below a range of $140 million and $142 million in the previous quarter.
Adjusted EBITDA was a loss of $19.4 million in the second quarter of 2022, versus a loss of $4.5 million in the same period last year.
“We have adjusted our near-term strategy and priorities to focus on the most immediate and impactful revenue-generating opportunities, all without compromising our ability to capitalize on the expected long-term growth in the sector,” Chang said. “In parallel, we are also in the process of restructuring our credit facility and reducing our operating expenses to strengthen our cash position. We remain steadfast on bringing new and innovative solutions to our customers and delivering value to our stakeholders.”
Last week, the company gave the market a heads-up that it took a big write-off in the quarter, saying it is conducting an impairment analysis. That write-off is expected to result in “significant non-cash impairment charges.” In addition to the write-downs, Agrify said it talked to its lenders to change some of the financial covenants regarding its debt.
Stifel analysts Andrew Carter and Christopher Growe earlier the month published an earnings preview report, saying that the “2021/2022 hydroponics recession has been deeper and longer than we originally anticipated with a significantly greater impact to our covered companies than we originally anticipated.”
“But, we contend the hydroponics category will at minimum regress to the underlying demand for cannabis (HSD) with an improvement in durables demand eventually taking hold,” Carter said, adding that he believes it will take time for enthusiasm to return to the sector of hydroponics.