The chairman of the company that launched a successful takeover of Scope Inc. last summer predicts the Reston-based electronics firm will turn a $500,000 profit in the fiscal year ending this August. Scope suffered massive losses in the previous year.
Michael Levy credited the turnaround in Scope's fortunes to measures his own company, Lexicon Corp., has taken to cut costs, to realign the marketing and sales force, and to shed problem lines.
"We're just very pleased with our investment. We purchased the stock at an average price of just under $5 a share, and it is now trading at $6," Levy said in an interview after he addressed a meeting of area stock brokers and financial analysts. "We've got things back on track."
Scope, which develops electronic warfare and other computer technologies for the military and corporate customers, has been beset by financial difficulties in recent years. It lost more than $1.4 million, or 98 cents per share, in a shortened 1985 fiscal year.
Last summer it was the object of a hostile takeover bid from Lexicon, a smaller Florida electronics firm, which succeeded in buying 50.2 percent of Scope stock. Lexicon took control of Scope last July.
Lexicon replaced the senior management of Scope, and has moved to consolidate the two companies' operations. The work force at Scope was cut from about 230 to 180 people, while Lexicon's automated assembly and test equipment in Florida is being moved to Scope's Reston headquarters.
Levy told the brokers gathered yesterday that one of Lexicon's key moves at Scope was to sell its "bar code" line -- equipment, for instance, that can scan codes on supermarket items -- to Allen-Bradley, a manufacturer of factory automation products, for $800,000. Allen-Bradley has given Scope a $4.7 million contract to continue producing the line for Allen-Bradley.
Levy said Scope should report revenue of about $13 million during this fiscal year, compared with $8.9 million last year. Lexicon's total revenue should be about $20 million, he said.