Friday, October 7, 2022
Oct. 7, 2022

Linkedin Pinterest

2018 hard on 4 of 6 Clark County-based stocks

nLIGHT, Northwest Pipe see share prices increase

By , Columbian Business Editor
5 Photos
A Papa Murphy's employee prepares a take-and-bake pizza.
A Papa Murphy's employee prepares a take-and-bake pizza. The Columbian files. Photo Gallery

It’s been a tough year to be a Wall Street stock, as they closed the year Monday with their steepest annual declines since 2008. For the six publicly traded companies in Clark County, it’s been a down year for most but not all.

Any rundown of local stock performance in 2018 needs to start with nLIGHT Inc., the industrial laser manufacturer, for several reasons.

First, the company that moved from Seattle to Clark County in 2002 issued a rare initial public offering on April 26. And nLIGHT did so with a flourish, as its $16 offering price rose to $26.95 in the first day of trading, a gain of 68 percent. By summer, the price climbed to about $40. nLIGHT raised $110 million in its IPO.

nLIGHT, traded as LASR on Nasdaq, closed Monday at $17.78, an increase of 10 percent over the IPO price.

Higher power laser products — lasers with an output power greater than 6 kilowatts — will drive nLIGHT’s growth and allow it to maintain an edge over its competitors, CEO and co-founder Scott Keeney told investment analysts during a November conference call following the release of its third-quarter revenue.

“We continue to generate growth that is outpacing the overall high power laser market,” Keeney said.

Northwest Pipe Co., traded as NWPX on Nasdaq, was the other local stock to post a stock price gain for the year. It opened the year at $19.05 and closed Monday at $23.29, an 18 percent increase.

The manufacturer of water and wastewater infrastructure announced in July it had acquired Ameron Water Transmission Group LLC in a $38.3 million cash sale. Ameron, a supplier of welded steel pressure pipe and reinforced concrete pipe, is based out of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., and saw $57 million in net sales last year.

Barrett Business Services Inc., traded as BBSI on Nasdaq, opened the year — Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018 — at $64.81 and closed Monday at $57.25, a nearly 12 percent decrease.

The business management company reported record earnings for the third quarter that ended Sept. 30. Net income was up 29 percent to $19.1 million compared to net income of $14.8 million for the same quarter last year.

In September, the U.S. attorney’s office announced that James Miller, Barrett’s former chief financial officer, had been indicted and accused of misrepresenting millions of dollars in filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, then personally profiting from those misstatements.

Nautilus Inc., traded as NLS on the New York Stock Exchange, opened the year at $13.45 and closed Monday at $10.90, a decline of nearly 19 percent.

The exercise equipment brand was looking forward to a holiday-sales-infused fourth quarter following a disappointing third quarter. The company’s shares lost 11 percent of their value the day after third-quarter earnings were announced in late October.

Papa Murphy’s Holdings Inc., traded as FRSH on Nasdaq, opened the year at $5.49 and closed Monday at $4.75, a 13 percent decrease.

In November, the take-and-bake pizza chain announced it hired a San Francisco merger-and-acquisition firm, North Point Advisors, to help conduct “a comprehensive review of its business strategy.” One of the options is selling the company.

Riverview Bancorp Inc., traded as RVSB on Nasdaq, opened the year at $8.71 and closed Monday at $7.28, a 16 percent decrease.

The Vancouver-based bank opened the year by announcing that longtime chief executive Pat Sheaffer, who worked at Riverview since 1963, was stepping down. He was replaced by Kevin Lycklama, who led the company’s acquisition of Gresham, Ore.-based MBank in September 2016.

Columbian Business Editor

Support local journalism

Your tax-deductible donation to The Columbian’s Community Funded Journalism program will contribute to better local reporting on key issues, including homelessness, housing, transportation and the environment. Reporters will focus on narrative, investigative and data-driven storytelling.

Local journalism needs your help. It’s an essential part of a healthy community and a healthy democracy.

Community Funded Journalism logo