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updated: 7/25/2012 1:34 PM

Motorola Solutions profits down, but growth anticipated

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  • Motorola Solutions in Schaumburg.

      Motorola Solutions in Schaumburg.
    Bill Zars | Staff Photographer

  • Greg Brown

    Greg Brown


Schaumburg-based Motorola Solutions Wednesday said its second-quarter sales were $2.1 billion, up 8 percent, while net earnings dropped nearly in half.

Still, CEO Greg Brown wasn't worried that net earnings for the second quarter were $182 million, compared to $349 million the year before. That second-quarter 2011 was unusually large due to the sale of its Networks business. So he remains optimistic and even raised the forecast for the third quarter. Motorola sees the third-quarter sales growing about 3 percent, compared with the same period a year ago and the full year could have sales of up to 6 percent, compared to 2011.

"Our strong revenue and earnings growth continues to demonstrate the strength and resiliency of our business," Brown said.

The maker of two-way radios and other equipment for police, fire and other first-responders as well as handheld devices for businesses still sees an active market, despite some rough spots with the economy.

As a result, Brown said he doesn't anticipate any changes in the local workforce, other than to move about 400 workers into the office on South Michigan Avenue in downtown Chicago.

Also, "a few hundred workers will be added" by the end of the year in Europe and Canada when the merger is complete with London-based Psion. Motorola Solutions agreed to pay $200 million for Psion, an enterprise mobile computing products and applications business.

"We have good prospects for growth," Brown said.

As for the 2 buildings on the Schaumburg campus that are still up for sale or lease, Brown said there hasn't been any prospects.

In February 2011, the company said it aimed to lease the so-called Parts Building, used primarily as a warehouse with about 260,000 square feet, and the IT Building, which has specialized devices and equipment with about 170,000 square feet. The company had hoped to use the rental fees to help offset expenses for operating the buildings.

"We don't anticipate anything more with those buildings for the rest of the year," he said, referring to the stagnant real estate market for commercial properties.

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