Lightpath Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:LPTH) Q4 2020 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript
Sep 10, 2020 • 04:30 pm ET
mix in our PMO business. Additionally, our backlog grew to $19.1 million up from $17.1 million at the end of fiscal 2019, but down from $20 million the previous quarter. The sequential decline in backlog is attributed primarily to the annual blanket order from our largest customer which typically is renewed in our fiscal second quarter ending December 31.
While the 4% growth in revenue year-over-year is definitely a positive outcome, our actual shipments during the quarter [Indecipherable] compared to plan due to unexpected rescheduling requests by some customers as a consequence of the impact of COVID-19. As we have mentioned in earlier communications over the last few months, we have been capacity constraint in some parts of our business since February, primarily due to the demand from 5G infrastructure development deployment, a trend that we see continuing. We have been addressing those capacity constraints through the use of overtime, through acceleration of investments in production equipment and through careful scheduling and planning of our production capacity to address all sales order -- all sales orders, requiring a very focused effort on both our internal and external supply chain.
However, due to COVID-19, some customers have experienced either fluctuating demand or some unexpected impact to the operation or other parts of the supply chain. Given the nature of the manufacturing process, and added complexity of being capacity constraint, our manufacturing schedule cannot always adjust fast enough to such unexpected changes, leading to temporary increase in our inventory as seen in our inventory levels growing to $8.9 million. While we strive to be agile and adjust quickly to changes in demand, we expect for some of these variations to continue in the coming months along until demand and supply chain return to a steady state.
In parallel to navigating the COVID-19 impacted economy and supply chain, our team has worked on developing a new strategic direction for LightPath that was initiated following my appointment as CEO in March 2020. This strategy has now been developed and this is one based on our strengths and our core capabilities to address the largest and fastest growing trend in our industry for visible and infrared optics.
I'd now like to discuss some key elements of this strategy. First, interesting support diversified photonics market. We're going to lead the efforts to capitalize on optics as an enabling technology. We recognized that the opportunity for optics and optical assemblies has changed over the past several years. Now, optics or more generally photonics and optical technologies are increasingly pervasive across industries and market. Optics is not an industry vertical in itself, but an enabling technology which spans industries well beyond telecommunication, for which we are seemingly known.
Optics are the key technology in industries from automotive, defense, medical, surveillance industrial equipment, telecommunication and consumer products, just to name a few, all of which are industries we already serve. As such, the market opportunity for what we do at LightPath is enormous and global, and is constantly expanding