By Dan O’Shea posted 16 Nov 2022
Depending on how you look at it, IonQ had either good or bad luck in posting its third quarter earnings report on the same day that all eyes were focused on Rigetti Computing. IonQ, which unlike Rigetti, did publish its quarterly earnings as scheduled, had mostly good news to deliver, though not many people seem to have noticed.
For the third quarter, IonQ brought in revenue of $2.8 million for the third quarter, above the midpoint of the previously provided outlook range of between $2.6 and $2.9 million, though some coverage of the report stated that the company narrowly missed analyst expectations. In any case, $2.8 million is a far cry from the measly $233,000 IonQ collected in the same quarter last year.
Plus, the solid revenue quarter kept IonQ on track to reach its full-year 2022 guidance of between $10.2 million and $10.7 million in revenue. The company also achieved bookings of $16.4 million for the third quarter, well above the less than $1 million in bookings for the second quarter this year, though IonQ previously quarter-to-quarter lumpiness is to be expected for the short term.
IonQ’s biggest score during the quarter was landing a multi-part $13.4 million contract with the Air Force Research Laboratory. This was not a “full system sale,” but IonQ CEO Peter Chapman said during the firm’s third quarter earnings call that such a sale may not lie far off. “We are actively pursuing full system sales with a number of interested parties, and we continue to believe that a sale of that nature could occur in the next 12 to 18 months,” he said.
Regarding the company’s outlook for the fourth quarter of 2022, IonQ officials said they are expecting revenue of between $2.9 million and $3.4 million. For the full year, in addition to the revenue guidance mentioned above, IonQ expects bookings to finish somewhere between $23 million and $27 million.
Summing up the third quarter, Chapman said, “We are translating our technology into meaningful business impact for our customers and are currently on track to hit all of our commercial milestones for 2022. We also have a strong balance sheet, which we view as a competitive advantage in the quantum computing industry, especially in this market. While we are disciplined in managing our costs, having this cash allows IonQ to accelerate while others may have to pull back. The market is noticing customers are noticing, governments are noticing and talent is noticing.”
Dan O’Shea has covered telecommunications and related topics including semiconductors, sensors, retail systems, digital payments and quantum computing/technology for over 25 years.