Jacksonville-based Redwire Corp. growing revenue

Company CEO Peter Cannito says it is “not a maybe someday space company.”

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The Redwire headquarters at 8226 Philips Highway, Suite 101, in Jacksonville.
The Redwire headquarters at 8226 Philips Highway, Suite 101, in Jacksonville.
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Redwire Corp. has not come close to the forecasts it offered before it went public in 2021, but it continues to grow revenue as it deploys new technology for space travel.

“We are not a maybe someday space company,” CEO Peter Cannito said in Jacksonville-based Redwire’s year-end conference call with analysts March 15.

“In 2023, 24 Redwire solutions were deployed on 14 launches,” he said.


“Whether deploying antennas for national security, rolling out solar arrays for the International Space Station or meeting our milestones on full satellite solutions for the European Space Agency, our reliable technical performance for our customers throughout 2023 was the foundation of our positive financial results.”

Redwire’s revenue grew 52% to $243.8 million in 2023 and it is forecasting revenue of $300 million this year.

The company was formed in 2020 and acquired seven space technology businesses before going public in 2021 by merging with a special purpose acquisition company.

When it announced plans to go public through the merger, it projected revenue of $424 million in 2023, $766 million in 2024 and $1.4 billion in 2025.

Redwire reported a net loss of $27.3 million in 2023 but it recorded positive cash from operations of $1.2 million.

Cannito described the financial results as positive in the conference call.

“Our heritage plus innovation strategy is working,” he said.

“By focusing on the fundamental building blocks of space, we are meeting the expanding demand of our customers for Redwire’s differentiated core offerings.”

Hinrichs says CSX workers now helping to recruit

CSX Corp. struggled to staff its trains after the coronavirus pandemic and one reason was employees were not helping, according to CEO Joe Hinrichs.

“They were no longer advocating for people to come to work here. They were telling them not to, which is worse,” Hinrichs said in a March 13 talk at the JP Morgan Industrials Conference in New York.

“That has flipped,” he said, with employees encouraging people to join the Jacksonville-based railroad company.

Hinrichs joined CSX in September 2022 and has made improving relations between management and employees a priority.

He said CSX is adequately staffed now.

“We feel good about our manpower levels,” he said.

“It took us a while to get there but we’re pretty stable now.”

The staffing level has helped CSX improve service to its freight customers, but Hinrichs said “we’re still a long way from where we should be and where we could be.”

CSX is maintaining its guidance for 2024 of freight volume and revenue growth by a low-to-mid-single digit percentage, he said.

“January got off to a little bit of a slow start,” Hinrichs said.

“What we’ve seen since then is strong volumes.”

Hinrichs said rebounds in some of its lagging sectors, including chemicals and domestic intermodal shipments, should help increase business later this year.

“We’re starting to make very good progress on our train tonnage,” he said.

CEO reduces stake in Cadre Holdings

Cadre Holdings Inc. CEO Warren Kanders reduced his stake in the company after a secondary stock sale.

The Jacksonville-based maker of safety products for law enforcement and first responders priced an offering of 3.638 million shares at $35 each March 14.

The stock had closed at $35.60 that day before the pricing was announced.

The sale included 2.2 million new shares issued by the company and 1.438 million shares offered by an entity owned by Kanders.

Kanders controlled about 13.6 million shares before the sale, or 36.2% of the company, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

The sale reduced his stake to about 30.6%.

Analyst downgrades FIS after run-up

Fidelity National Information Services Inc.’s stock has been on the rise this year as the financial technology company sold off its majority interest in merchant payments technology firm Worldpay, which had been a drag on the company.

However, because of the strong run-up in the stock, Baird analyst David Koning downgraded his rating on the Jacksonville-based company known as FIS from “outperform” to “neutral.”

“We like the company a lot,” Koning said in his March 13 report.

“We like Core Processing and Capital Markets unit’s growth, and we like the solid beat/raise execution under (CEO) Stephanie Ferris’ leadership,” he said.

He also said he likes the return of Charles Drucker to the CEO spot at Worldpay, a position he held before FIS acquired the Cincinnati-based company in 2019. 

FIS continues to own 45% of Worldpay after selling off the majority stake.

“Yet after one of the best stock runs on our list year-to-date, we view risk/reward as pretty balanced,” Koning said.

The stock was up 16% so far in 2024, compared with an 8.5% gain for the Standard & Poor’s 500 index, he said.

FIS was trading at $69.55 at the time of Koning’s report and he values the stock at $78.

That value consists of $9 a share for FIS’ remaining stake in Worldpay and $69 for FIS’ core business, he said.

Community First CU grows, earnings fall

Community First Credit Union reported growth in assets and membership and expanded its branch network.

However, the Jacksonville-based credit union’s annual report released at its March 14 annual meeting showed earnings fell in 2023.

Total assets rose 7.1% to $2.72 billion and membership grew by 4,731 to 172,758, but net income fell 19% to $27.3 million.

“Our members felt the effects of inflation, including soaring premiums for home and auto insurance. In addition, many members experienced job losses or reduced hours,” President and CEO John Hirabayashi said in his message in the annual report.

“These hardships contributed to member deposit withdrawals and a decrease in our credit union’s net deposits of 0.88%, our first decline in over 10 years,” he said. 

The economy also contributed to an increase in delinquent loans.

Members did benefit from rising rates, with interest payments to members tripling to $26.5 million. That higher expense contributed to the lower earnings.

Community First announced in September that Hirabayashi will retire this year.

As the credit union searches for his successor, it continues to expand.

Community First opened its 21st branch recently at Boulevard Crossing in Jacksonville and has more in development.

“These activities are part of our long-range plan to add 10 new branches and 17 new ATM locations in a four-county region by 2028,” Hirabayashi said.

Embraer stock rises while Boeing drops

While Boeing Co.’s stock is sinking amid continuing questions about the safety of its airplanes, another aerospace company with a facility in Jacksonville is on the rise.

Brazil-based Embraer S.A. reached its highest level in almost six years March 14 after Morgan Stanley analyst Kristine Liwag named it the firm’s top pick in aerospace.

“We see Embraer as a third Commercial Aerospace player rising to the occasion and breaking into the duopoly of Boeing and Airbus,” Liwag said in her report.

“After decades of investments, Embraer is entering a harvest period,” she said.

Embraer rose as much as $2.15 to $23.59 on March 14 after her report. After previous gains in the first two months, the stock was up about 28% so far in 2024.

Boeing’s stock was down 31% year-to-date.

Liwag said Boeing’s struggles, along with a large backlog at Airbus, are creating an opportunity.

“We expect Embraer to be a beneficiary of commercial aircraft orders in an environment where aircraft demand exceeds supply,” she said.

“Embraer has matured from a niche aircraft manufacturer to a globally prominent diversified Aerospace & Defense company poised to win market share.”

Embraer has been working on an aircraft called the A-29 Super Tucano for the U.S. Air Force since 2013 in a facility at Jacksonville International Airport.

Boeing, which has been dealing with issues with its passenger jets, opened a new $245.8 million facility in February at Cecil Airport in West Jacksonville that will service military aircraft.

Liwag maintains an “equal weight” rating on Boeing.

“We acknowledge that Boeing may have a lot of work to do within the organization to improve safety processes. However, tying in the dollar and cents impact that investors are seeking from the FAA recommendations on improving the safety is nebulous,” Liwag said in her most recent report on Boeing.

Liwag reiterated her “overweight” rating on Embraer but more than doubled her price target for the stock from $19.50 to $40.

“Embraer survived several market cycles, including the worst exogenous shock in aviation, Covid-19 in 2020, as well as challenging competitive dynamics from significantly larger and better funded competitors, Boeing and Airbus,” she said.

“Embraer is poised to thrive in this upcycle.”

Lennar says market share up in Jacksonville

Lennar Corp. co-CEO Jon Jaffe said in a quarterly conference call the homebuilder’s market share is increasing in Jacksonville and other cities.

However, he did not specify how the Miami-based company defines market share and Lennar’s media and investor relations contacts did not respond to a request for more information.

Jaffe said in Lennar’s March 14 call that the company’s market share in Jacksonville rose from 17% to 24%.

Lennar, which builds homes in 22 states, said total new orders for homes rose 28% in its first quarter ended Feb. 29 and home deliveries rose 23%.

The company said revenue increased 13% to $7.3 billion and earnings rose by 51 cents to $2.57 per share.



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