Roomba stocks are a mess thanks to weak earnings

One of the loudest sucking sounds on Wall Street on Thursday came from iRobot, maker of the Roomba robotic vacuum cleaner.

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Shares of the Bedford, Mass., company tumbled 32 percent, to $59.80, after it forecast weaker-than-expected profits for 2018.

The company, which pioneered the self-driving vacuum sector, has been battling lower-cost rivals recently, which has tamped down sales and profits.

“Investors have to have a leap of faith that management can work its way out of a narrow product set,” Ben Axler, whose investment firm Spruce Point Capital Management, has been shorting iRobot since June, told The Post.

iRobot reported $326.9 million in revenue in the fourth quarter, marking a 54 percent increase in revenue from the year-ago quarter.

But investors were spooked that the company predicted annual per share profits in the range of only $2.10-$2.35 — well below the $2.70 analysts expected.

“I think we’ve taken aboard feedback that everyone would be quite happy if there were more legs on the stool for revenue driving than just Roomba,” Chief executive Colin Angle said on an analysts call.


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