Aerojet Rocketdyne returned to the black in the first quarter, revved by a 10 percent rise in revenue and ongoing efforts at cost cutting.
A year ago, the rocket-engine maker said it would cut its work force by 10 percent. including 250 pink slips directed to employees at its Rancho Cordova, Calif., headquarters. Aerojet also has been chopping its office and manufacturing space, looking to reduce both by 40 percent.
Aerojet posted $5.1 million in first-quarter net income. That compares with a pro forma $3.3 million loss reported for the same three months of 2015.
Revenue totaled $356.9 million in the latest quarter.
This was the first time the company reported on a January-through-March basis. On Jan. 20, the Aerojet board voted to transition the company to a calendar-year reporting basis from its previous fiscal-year footing.
“The Competitive Improvement Program is achieving cost reductions ahead of schedule,” Aerojet chief Eileen Drake said after the quarterly results were released on May 10.
In February, the U.S. Air Force’s selected Aerojet Rocketdyne to share in a public-private partnership to develop a new liquid booster engine — dubbed the AR1 — for use in future military space missions.
The AR1 will replace the company’s work force liquid booster engine, the RD-180, which has been used in more than 60 successful rocket launches to date. Aerojet could see up to $536 million pumped into AR1 development through the pact.
The company also inked a $67 million pact with NASA in April to develop a high-power electric propulsion system for integration into rockets being developed for various deep-space missions.
Aerojet (NYSE: AJRD) reported its quarterly results after the close of market trading. On the day, Aerojet shares rose 24 cents, or 1.34 percent, to close the broadly upbeat session at $18.05. That was roughly midway between the stock’s 52-week range of $13.98-$24.35.