Tetra Tech 10-K 2005
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Commission File Number 0-19655
TETRA TECH, INC.
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant: (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes ý No o
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant's knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K. o
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is an accelerated filer (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act). Yes ý No o
The aggregate market value of the registrant's common stock held by non-affiliates on March 26, 2004 was $1.09 billion (based upon the closing price of a share of registrant's common stock as reported by the Nasdaq National Market on that date).
On December 1, 2004, 56,344,294 shares of the registrant's common stock were outstanding.
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
Portions of registrant's Annual Report to Stockholders for the fiscal year ended October 3, 2004 are incorporated by reference in Part I and Part II of this report where indicated. Portions of registrant's Proxy Statement for its 2005 Annual Meeting of Stockholders are incorporated by reference in Part III of this report where indicated.
This Annual Report on Form 10-K ("Report"), including the "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" which is incorporated by reference from our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders, contains forward-looking statements regarding future events and our future results that are based on current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections about the industries in which we operate and the beliefs and assumptions of our management. Words such as "expects," "anticipates," "targets," "goals," "projects," "intends," "plans," "believes," "estimates," "seeks," "continues," "may," variations of such words, and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. In addition, any statement that refers to projections of our future financial performance, our anticipated growth and trends in our businesses, and other characterizations of future events or circumstances, are forward-looking statements. Readers are cautioned that these forward-looking statements are only predictions and are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. Therefore, actual results may differ materially and adversely from those expressed in any forward-looking statements. Readers are referred to the risks and uncertainties identified below under "Risk Factors," and elsewhere herein and in the 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders. We undertake no obligation to revise or update publicly any forward-looking statements for any reason.
Item 1. Business
We are a leading provider of consulting, engineering and technical services in the areas of resource management, infrastructure and communications. As a consultant, we assist our clients in defining problems and developing innovative and cost-effective solutions. These services span the lifecycle of a project and include research and development, applied science and technology, engineering design, program management, construction, construction management, and operations and maintenance.
Since our initial public offering in December 1991, we have increased the size and scope of our business, expanded our service offerings and diversified our client base and the markets we serve through strategic acquisitions and internal growth. We expect to continue to pursue complementary acquisitions to expand our geographic reach and increase the breadth and depth of our service offerings to address existing and emerging markets. As of the end of fiscal 2004, we had more than 7,800 full-time equivalent employees worldwide, located primarily in North America in more than 350 locations.
We were incorporated in Delaware in February 1988 and are headquartered in Pasadena, California. The mailing address of our headquarters is 3475 East Foothill Boulevard, Pasadena, California 91107, and the telephone number at that location is (626) 351-4664. Our corporate website is located at www.tetratech.com. Through a link on the Investors section of our website, we make available the following filings as soon as reasonably practicable after they are electronically filed with or furnished to the SEC: our Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and any amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(d) or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. All such filings are available free of charge.
Due to increased competition, changing regulatory environments and rapid technological advancement, many government and commercial organizations face new and complex challenges. These organizations are turning to professional service firms to assist them with addressing these challenges. Each organization presents its own unique set of issues and often seeks professional service firms with industry-specific expertise to analyze its problems and develop appropriate solutions. These solutions
are then implemented by firms possessing the required engineering and technical service capabilities. Each of the following three business areas faces its own unique set of challenges:
Resource Management. The world's natural resources (water, air and soil) are interdependent and create a delicate balance. Factors such as agricultural and residential development, commercial construction and industrialization often upset this balance. Public concern over environmental issues, especially water quality and availability, has been a driving force behind numerous laws and regulations that are designed to prevent environmental degradation and mandate restorative measures. Government and commercial organizations are focusing on resource management to comply with environmental laws and regulations, respond to public pressure and attain operating efficiencies. Two areas particularly affected by these trends are water management and waste management.
Infrastructure. Continued population growth and increased user expectations place significant strain on an overburdened infrastructure, thereby requiring additional development. This development includes water and wastewater treatment plants, transportation, pipelines, and communication and power networks, as well as educational, recreational and correctional facilities. In addition, as existing facilities age, they require upgrading or replacement. Further, the trend toward outsourcing of services is causing public and private organizations that develop and maintain these facilities to evaluate their cost structures and establish more efficient alternatives. After September 11, 2001, the need to protect civil infrastructure and provide additional security-related infrastructure became significant. The federal government has increasingly turned to professional service firms to provide these services, particularly at seaports and airports. These factors have increased the need for planning, engineering design, program management, construction management, and operations and maintenance services of the type that we provide.
Communications. Technological change and government deregulation have spurred sweeping changes in the communications infrastructure industry. Local and long-distance telephone companies, cable operators and wireless service providers are penetrating each other's markets and trying to establish a foothold in new markets created by new technologies and deregulation. Various service providers are consolidating in order to offer their subscribers a comprehensive set of services and to maintain dominance in their markets. As these trends continue, network service providers have increasingly turned to professional service firms for advice and assistance in planning, deploying and maintaining their communications networks.
The Tetra Tech Solution
Tetra Tech provides consulting, engineering and technical services that assist clients in identifying industry-specific problems, defining appropriate solutions and implementing those solutions. We believe
that we are one of the leaders in many of the markets we serve and that the following factors distinguish us from our competitors:
Understanding Client Needs. The ability to identify client needs is essential to strategic planning and execution. Even before the proposal process begins, we assist our clients by helping them define their business objectives and strategies and identify issues that are critical to their success. We strive to develop numerous contacts at various levels within our clients' organizations to help us identify the key issues from a variety of perspectives. We believe that our long history and exposure to a broad client base increases our awareness of the issues being confronted by organizations and thereby helps us identify and solve our clients' problems.
Capitalizing on Our Extensive Technical Experience. Since the inception of our predecessor in 1966, we have provided innovative consulting and engineering services, historically focusing on cost-effective solutions to water resource management and environmental problems. We have been successful in leveraging this foundation of scientific and engineering capabilities into other market areas, including transportation, educational facilities and communications. Our services are provided by a wide range of professionals including: archaeologists, biologists, chemical engineers, chemists, civil engineers, computer scientists, economists, electrical engineers, environmental engineers, environmental scientists, geologists, hydrogeologists, mechanical engineers, oceanographers, project managers, radio frequency engineers and toxicologists. Because of the experience that we have gained from thousands of completed projects, we often are able to apply proven solutions to client problems without the time-consuming process of developing new approaches.
Offering a Full Range of Services. Our depth of consulting, engineering and technical skills allows us to respond to client needs at every phase of a project, including initial planning, research and development, applied science and technology, engineering design, program management and construction management. Once a particular project is completed, we are able to offer our clients additional value-added services such as operations and maintenance. Our expertise across industries and our broad service offerings enable us to be a single-source provider to many of our clients.
Providing Broad Geographic Coverage and Local Expertise. We believe that proximity to our clients is instrumental to understanding their needs and delivering comprehensive services. We have significantly broadened our geographic presence in recent years through strategic acquisitions and internal growth. We currently have operations in 49 states. We have also increased our international presence, and currently have operations in Afghanistan, Canada, China, Germany, Greece, India, Iraq, Japan, the Netherlands, Peru, the Philippines and Poland.
Our objective is to become the leading provider of consulting, engineering and technical services in our chosen business areas. To achieve this objective, we plan to continue the following primary strategies that we believe have been integral to our success:
Identify and Expand Into New Business Areas. We use our consulting services and certain of our technical services as entry points to evaluate new business areas. After our consulting practice is established in a new business area, we can expand our operations by offering additional technical services. For example, based on our work in watershed management consulting services, we identified and expanded into water infrastructure engineering services.
Expand Service Offerings and Geographic Presence Through Acquisitions. We believe that acquisition opportunities exist that will allow us to continue our growth in selected business areas, broaden our service offerings and extend our geographic presence. We intend to make acquisitions that will enable us to strengthen our position in certain key business areas, or further strengthen our
position in our more established service offerings. We believe that our reputation and public company status make us an attractive partner and provide us with an advantage in pursuing acquisitions.
Focus on Public Sector Projects. We intend to continue marketing to public sector organizations and bidding for projects to stay on the leading edge of policy development. This experience helps us identify market opportunities and enhances our ability to serve other public and commercial clients. Additionally, public sector contracts often provide more predictable revenue and returns than commercial sector contracts.
Strengthen Project and Financial Performance. We take a disciplined approach to monitoring, managing and improving our return on investment in each of our business areas through our attempts to promptly bill and collect accounts receivable, negotiate appropriate contract terms and manage our contract performance to minimize schedule delays and cost overruns. We believe that our focus on the improvement of our project and financial disciplines enables us to generate cash flow through operations and thereby fund acquisitions and internal growth.
Leverage Existing Client Base. Some of our clients engage us to provide limited services. We believe that we can increase our revenue by selling additional services to our existing client base. For example, we may be able to secure an operation and maintenance contract after working with a client on the design and construction phases of a facility. In addition, we believe that our ability to offer a full spectrum of services will allow us to grow our business and compete more effectively for larger projects.
We provide our clients with consulting, engineering and technical services that focus on our clients' specific needs. We offer these services individually or as part of our full service approach to problem solving. We are currently performing services under contracts ranging from small site investigations to large, complex infrastructure and communications projects. Our service offerings include:
We manage our business in three reportable segments: resource management, infrastructure and communications. Management established these segments based upon the services provided, the different marketing strategies associated with these services and the specialized needs of their respective clients. Our resource management reportable segment provides engineering and consulting
services relating primarily to water quality and availability, environmental restoration, productive reuse of defense facilities, and strategic environmental resource planning to both public and private organizations. Our infrastructure reportable segment provides engineering, program management and construction management services for the additional development, upgrade and replacement of existing civil and security infrastructure to both public and private organizations. Our communications reportable segment provides a comprehensive set of services, including network planning, engineering, site acquisition, construction and construction management, and operations and maintenance services to telecommunications companies, wireless service providers and cable operators.
In fiscal 2003, we began the process of consolidating communications into the infrastructure reporting segment, as management believed that communications would have lower revenue and earnings in the immediate and longer-term reporting periods. In addition, our traditional communications business was diminishing, and was being replaced with typical infrastructure projects and clients in water and water-related areas. As such, management concluded that we had two reportable segments. However, due to a less than expected decrease in revenue in our communications business, management concluded in 2004 that communications should again be presented as a separate reportable segment. As a result, we now present three reportable segments.
The following table presents, for the periods indicated, the approximate percentage of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, attributable to our reportable segments:
Financial information for these segments can be found in Note 15, "Reportable Segments," included under the heading "Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements" in our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders.
One of our major concentrations is water resource management, where we have a leading position in understanding the interrelationships of water quality and human activities. We support high priority government programs for water quality improvement, environmental restoration, productive reuse of defense facilities and strategic environmental resource planning. We provide comprehensive services, including research and development, applied science and technology, engineering design, construction management, program management, and operations and maintenance. Our service offerings in the resource management segment are focused on the following project areas:
Surface Water Projects: Public concern with the quality of rivers, lakes and streams, as well as coastal and marine waters, and the ensuing legislative and regulatory response, are driving demand for our services. Over the past 38 years, we have developed a specialized set of technical skills that positions us to compete effectively for surface water and watershed management projects. We provide water resource services to federal government clients such as the EPA, the Department of Defense (DoD) and the Department of Energy (DOE), and to a broad base of commercial sector clients including those in the chemical, pharmaceutical, utility, aerospace and petroleum industries. We also provide surface water services to state and local government agencies, particularly in the area of watershed management.
Groundwater Projects: Groundwater is the source of drinking water for much of the U.S. population and a substantial portion of the water used for residential, industrial and agricultural purposes. Our activities in the groundwater field are diverse and typically include projects such as investigating and identifying sources of chemical contamination, examining the extent of contamination, analyzing the speed and direction of contamination migration, and designing and evaluating remedial alternatives. In addition, we conduct monitoring studies to assess the effectiveness of groundwater treatment and extraction wells.
Waste Management Projects: We currently provide a wide range of engineering and consulting services for hazardous waste contamination and remediation projects, from initial site assessment through design and implementation phases of remedial solutions. In addition, we perform risk assessments to determine the probability of adverse health effects that may result from exposure to toxic substances. We also provide waste minimization and pollution prevention services and evaluate the effectiveness of innovative technologies and novel solutions to environmental problems.
Regulatory Compliance Projects: Our regulatory compliance services include advising our clients on the full spectrum of regulatory requirements under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the National Environmental Policy Act and other environmental laws and regulations. Although we provide services to both government and commercial sector clients, our current emphasis is on providing regulatory compliance services to the U.S. Army, Navy and Air Force.
In our infrastructure segment, we focus on the development of water infrastructure projects; institutional facilities; commercial, recreational, and leisure facilities; transportation projects; and systems and security projects. These facilities and projects are an essential part of everyday life and also sustain economic activity, the security of our infrastructure and the quality of life. Our engineers, architects and planners work in partnership with our clients to provide adequate infrastructure development within their financial constraints. We assist clients with infrastructure projects by providing management consulting, engineering design, program management, construction management, and operations and maintenance. Our service offerings in the infrastructure segment are focused on the following project areas:
Water Infrastructure Projects: Our technical services are applied to all aspects of water quantity and quality management ranging from stormwater management through drainage and flood control projects to major water and wastewater treatment plants. Our experience includes planning, design and construction services for drinking water projects, the design of water treatment facilities and reservoirs, and the design of distribution systems including pipelines and pump stations.
Institutional Facilities Projects: We provide planning, architectural, engineering and construction management services, including land development and interior building design, for educational, healthcare and research facilities. We have completed engineering and construction management projects for a wide range of clients with specialized needs such as security systems, training and audiovisual facilities, clean rooms, laboratories, medical facilities and emergency preparedness facilities.
Commercial, Recreational and Leisure Facilities Projects: We specialize in the planning and design of water-related entertainment and leisure facilities such as theme park attractions and large marine aquariums. Our projects also include high-rise office buildings, museums, hotels,
parks, visitor centers and marinas. We have designed complex aquatic life support systems and provided structural, civil and mechanical engineering and design of interpretive exhibits for a series of large aquarium projects. We have also designed integrated interior building systems for heat, light, security and communications to improve building energy efficiency and cost effectiveness.
Transportation Projects: We provide architectural, engineering and construction management services for transportation projects to improve public safety and mobility. Our projects include roadway improvements, commuter railway stations, airport expansions, bridges, major highways, and the repair, replacement and upgrading of older transportation facilities.
Systems Support and Security Projects: We provide technology systems integration to improve national security, principally for federal infrastructure. Our projects range from infrastructure vulnerability assessments to security engineering design and project management services. We also provide systems analysis and information management to optimize the U.S. commercial aviation system, and outsourced technical services to improve national security.
In the communications segment, we focus on the delivery of technical solutions necessary to design and build communications infrastructure projects. Our capabilities support a wide range of technologies for rapid information transport including broadband and wireless communications. Our communications clients seek consulting, applied science, engineering design, program management, construction management, and operations and maintenance services. Our service offerings in communications are focused on the following project areas:
Network Feasibility Projects: We apply our technical services to all aspects of assessing the feasibility of network systems development, expansion and upgrades for our clients. Our experience includes feasibility and remote site selection studies, cost-benefit modeling and market assessments. We also assist network service providers with technical requirements definition, sensitivity/risk analysis and key economic projections.
Network Planning Projects: We specialize in network planning, including short-term and long-term network configuration and development planning. We develop outside plant designs, civil engineering and regulatory compliance assessment and support efforts. In addition, our projects have included employment analysis, staffing, logistics, planning, and materials provisioning and management.
Network Engineering Projects: We provide a full range of onsite and offsite premises engineering and support services for projects ranging from developing computer aided design workprints to field surveys. Our experience includes digital evaluation and terrain modeling, right-of-way permitting and site acquisition for wireless and broadband networks. Our capabilities include radio frequency engineering for wireless networks and for fiber optic, coaxial cable, and hybrid coaxial fiber networks.
Network Development Projects: We have performed both inside and outside plant projects for major network service providers and building owners using both broadband and wireless technologies. Our construction projects include urban and long-haul underground cable installation as well as cell tower installation. We have also applied our capabilities to wireless cell sites and aerial cable placement.
Network Maintenance Projects: We provide maintenance services, primarily on broadband networks, that are necessary to keep our clients' networks operating. Maintenance is necessary when a fiber optic cable is cut or a piece of network equipment fails. The network maintenance
market is a function of the age and size of networks. As a result, this market is likely to increase as networks become larger and older.
The following table presents brief examples of current projects in our three segments:
We provide services to a diverse base of federal, state and local government agencies and commercial and international clients. The following table presents, for the periods indicated, the approximate percentage of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, attributable to our client sectors:
Federal government agencies are among our most significant clients. During fiscal 2004, the DoD, EPA and DOE accounted for approximately 26.7%, 6.6% and 4.8%, respectively, of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs. By comparison, during fiscal 2003, the DoD, EPA and DOE accounted for approximately 18.8%, 7.9% and 3.8%, respectively, of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs. We often support multiple programs within a single federal agency, both domestically and internationally. We assist state and local government clients in a variety of jurisdictions across the country. No single state and local government client accounted for more than 10% of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, in fiscal 2004. Our commercial sector clients include companies in the chemical, mining, pharmaceutical, aerospace, automotive, petroleum, communications and utility industries. No single commercial sector client accounted for more than 10% of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, in fiscal 2004. However, we have one client in our wireless communications business, Nextel Operations, Inc., that accounted for substantially all of that business' revenue in fiscal 2004.
The following table presents a list of representative clients in our three segments. We have not included international clients because they represent a significantly smaller percentage of our client base.
Our services are billed under three principal types of contracts with our clients: fixed-price, time-and-materials, and cost-plus. The following table presents, for the periods indicated, the
approximate percentage of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, derived from these types of contracts:
Our clients select the type of contract we enter into for a particular engagement. Under a fixed-price contract, the client agrees to pay a specified price for our performance of the entire contract or a specified portion of the contract. Fixed-price contracts carry certain inherent risks, including risks of losses from underestimating costs, delays in project completion, problems with new technologies, price increases for materials, and economic and other changes that may occur over the contract period. Consequently, the profitability, if any, of fixed-price contracts may vary substantially. Under our time-and-materials contracts, we are paid for labor at negotiated hourly billing rates and for other expenses. Profitability on these contracts is driven by billable headcount and cost control. Under our cost-plus contracts, we are reimbursed for allowable costs and fees, which may be fixed or performance-based. If our costs exceed the contract ceiling or are not allowable, we may not be able to obtain full reimbursement. Further, the amount of the fee received for a cost-plus award fee contract partially depends upon the client's discretionary periodic assessment of our performance on that contract.
Some contracts made with the federal government are subject to annual approval of funding. Federal government agencies may impose spending restrictions that limit the continued funding of our existing contracts and may limit our ability to obtain additional contracts. These limitations, if significant, could have a material adverse effect on us. All contracts made with the federal government may be terminated by the government at any time, with or without cause.
Federal government agencies have formal policies against continuing or awarding contracts that would create actual or potential conflicts of interest with other activities of a contractor. These policies may prevent us in certain cases from bidding for or performing government contracts resulting from or relating to certain work we have performed. In addition, services performed for a commercial or government sector client may create conflicts of interest that preclude or limit our ability to obtain work for another private organization. We attempt to identify actual or potential conflicts of interest and to minimize the possibility that such conflicts would affect our work under current contracts or our ability to compete for future contracts. We have, on occasion, declined to bid on a project because of an existing or potential conflict of interest.
Our contracts with the federal government are subject to audit by the government, primarily by the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA). The DCAA generally seeks to: (1) identify and evaluate all activities that either contribute to, or have an impact on, proposed or incurred costs of government contracts; (2) evaluate the contractor's policies, procedures, controls and performance; and (3) prevent or avoid wasteful, careless and inefficient production or service. To accomplish this, the DCAA examines our internal control systems, management policies and financial capability; evaluates the accuracy, reliability and reasonableness of our cost representations and records; and assesses compliance by us with Cost Accounting Standards (CAS) and defective-pricing clauses found within the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR). The DCAA also performs the annual review of our overhead rates and assists in the establishment of our final rates. This review focuses on the allowability of cost items and the applicability of CAS. The DCAA also audits cost-based contracts, including the close-out of those contracts.
The DCAA also reviews all types of federal proposals, including those of award, administration, modification and re-pricing. The DCAA considers our cost accounting system, estimating methods and procedures and specific proposal requirements. Operational audits are also performed by the DCAA. A review of our operations at every major organizational level is also conducted during the proposal review period.
During the course of its audit, the DCAA may disallow costs if it determines that we accounted for such costs in a manner inconsistent with CAS. Under a government contract, only those costs that are reasonable, allocable and allowable are recoverable. A disallowance of costs by the DCAA could have a material adverse effect on us.
Due to the severity of the legal remedies available to the government, including the required payment of damages and/or penalties, criminal and civil sanctions, and debarment, we maintain controls to avoid the occurrence of fraud and other unlawful activities. In addition, we maintain preventative audit programs and mitigation measures to ensure that appropriate control systems are in place.
We provide our services under contracts, purchase orders or retainer letters. Our policy provides that all contracts must be in writing. However, we are not always successful in implementing this policy. We bill all of our clients periodically based on costs incurred, on either an hourly-fee basis or on a percentage of completion basis, as the project progresses. Most of our agreements permit our clients to terminate the agreements without cause upon payment of fees and expenses through the date of the termination. Generally, our contracts do not require that we provide performance bonds. If required, a performance bond, issued by a surety company, guarantees the contractor's performance under the contract. If the contractor defaults under the contract, the surety will, in its discretion, complete the job or pay the client the amount of the bond. If the contractor does not have a performance bond and defaults in the performance of a contract, the contractor is responsible for all damages resulting from the breach of contract. These damages include the cost of completion, together with possible consequential damages such as lost profits.
Marketing and Business Development
We utilize both a centralized corporate marketing department and local business development groups within each of our operations. Our corporate marketing department assists management in establishing our business plan, our target markets and an overall marketing strategy. The corporate marketing department also identifies and tracks the development of large federal programs, assesses new business areas, assists in the selection of appropriate partners for new projects and assists in the bid process for new projects. We market throughout the organizations we target, focusing primarily on senior representatives in government organizations and senior management in private companies. In addition, the corporate marketing department supports marketing activities company-wide by coordinating corporate promotional and professional activities, including appearances at trade shows, direct mailings and public relations.
Most business development activities are performed through our local offices. We believe that these offices have a greater understanding of local issues, laws and regulations and, therefore, can better target their marketing activities. These business development activities are coordinated by full-time staff located in certain of our offices. These activities include meetings with potential clients and state, county and municipal regulators, presentations to civic and professional organizations and seminars on current technical topics.
We have acquired a significant number of companies and we expect to make future acquisitions. Acquisitions are inherently risky, and no assurance can be given that our previous or future acquisitions will be successful or will not have a material adverse effect on our financial position, results of
operations or cash flow. Prior acquisitions have resulted in a wide range of outcomes, including some that have not performed as we or analysts have expected. The risks associated with acquisitions are more fully discussed in the section of this Report entitled "Risk Factors."
The market for our services is sometimes highly competitive. We often compete with many other firms ranging from small regional firms to large international firms that may have greater financial and marketing resources.
We perform a broad spectrum of consulting, engineering and technical services across the resource management, infrastructure and communications segments. Services within these segments are provided to a client base that includes federal agencies, such as the DoD, the DOE, the U.S. Department of the Interior, the EPA and the U.S. Postal Service, state and local agencies, and the commercial sector. Our competition varies and is a function of the business areas in which, and client sectors for which, we perform our services. The range of competitors for any one procurement can vary from one to 100 firms, depending upon technical qualifications, the relative value of the project, geographic location, the financial terms and risks associated with the work, and any restrictions placed upon competition by the client. Historically, clients have chosen among competing firms by weighing the quality, innovation and timeliness of the firm's service versus its cost, to determine which firm offers the best value. When less work becomes available in a given market, price becomes an increasingly important factor.
We believe that our principal competitors include, in alphabetical order, AECOM Technology Corporation; Anteon Corporation; Black & Veatch Corporation; Brown & Caldwell; Camp, Dresser & McKee Inc.; CH2M Hill Companies Ltd.; Computer Associates International, Inc.; Earth Tech, Inc., a subsidiary of Tyco International Ltd.; Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc.; MasTec, Inc.; MWH Global, Inc.; Quanta Services, Inc.; Science Applications International Corporation; The Shaw Group, Inc.; TRC Companies, Inc.; URS Corporation; Weston Solutions, Inc.; and Wireless Facilities, Inc.
As of October 3, 2004, our backlog was approximately $1.08 billion, compared to $1.05 billion as of September 28, 2003. We include in backlog only those contracts for which funding has been provided and work authorizations have been received. We estimate that approximately $675 million of the backlog as of October 3, 2004 will be recognized during fiscal 2005. No assurance can be given that all amounts included in backlog will ultimately be realized, even if evidenced by written contracts. For example, certain of our contracts with the federal government and other clients are terminable at will. If any of these clients terminate their contracts prior to completion, we may not be able to recognize that revenue.
We engage in various service activities that are subject to government oversight, including environmental laws and regulations, general government procurement laws and regulations, and other regulations and requirements imposed by specific government agencies with whom we conduct business.
Environmental. A substantial portion of our business involves the planning, design, program management and construction management of pollution control facilities, as well as the assessment and management of remediation activities at hazardous waste or Superfund sites and military bases. In addition, we contract with federal government entities to destroy hazardous materials, including weapons stockpiles. These activities require us to manage, handle, remove, treat, transport and dispose of toxic or hazardous substances.
Some environmental laws, such as the federal Superfund law and similar state statutes, can impose liability upon present and former owners and operators for the entire cost of clean-up for contaminated facilities or sites, as well as generators, transporters and persons arranging for the treatment or disposal of such substances. In addition, while we strive to handle hazardous and toxic substances with care and in accordance with safe methods, the possibility of accidents, leaks, spills and the events of force majeure always exist. Humans exposed to these materials, including workers or subcontractors engaged in the transportation and disposal of hazardous materials and persons in affected areas, may be injured or become ill, resulting in lawsuits that expose us to liability that may result in substantial damage awards against us. Liabilities for contamination or human exposure to hazardous or toxic materials, or a failure to comply with applicable regulations, could result in substantial costs to us, including clean-up costs, fines and civil or criminal sanctions, third party claims for property damage or personal injury, or cessation of remediation activities.
Certain of our business operations are covered by Public Law 85-804, which provides for government indemnification against claims and damages arising out of unusually hazardous activities performed at the request of the government. Due to changes in public policies and law, however, government indemnification may not be available in the case of any future claims or liabilities relating to other hazardous activities that we undertake to perform.
Government Procurement. The services we provide to the federal government are subject to FAR and other rules and regulations applicable to government contracts. These rules and regulations, among other things:
In addition, services provided to the DoD are monitored by the Defense Contract Management Agency and audited by the DCAA. Our government clients can also terminate any of their contracts, and many of our government contracts are subject to renewal or extension annually. For additional information on risks associated with our government-related business, please refer to the section entitled "Risk Factors."
We experience seasonal trends in our business. Our revenue is typically lower in the first quarter of our fiscal year, primarily due to the Thanksgiving, Christmas and, in certain years, New Year's holidays that fall within the first quarter. Many of our clients' employees, as well as our own employees, take vacations during these holidays. This results in fewer billable hours worked on projects and, correspondingly, less revenue recognized. Our revenue is typically higher in the second half of the fiscal year, due to weather conditions during spring and summer that result in higher billable hours. In addition, our revenue is typically higher in the fourth quarter of the fiscal year due to the federal government's fiscal year-end spending.
Potential Liability and Insurance
Our business activities could expose us to potential liability under various environmental laws and under workplace health and safety regulations. In addition, we occasionally assume liability by contract under indemnification agreements. We cannot predict the magnitude of such potential liabilities.
We maintain a comprehensive general liability policy, with an umbrella policy that covers losses beyond the general liability limits. We also maintain professional errors and omissions liability and contractor's pollution liability insurance policies. Currently, we have $26.0 million of coverage per occurrence on our general liability policy, which includes a deductible of $300,000. The errors and omissions and contractor's pollution liability insurance policies have limits of $30.0 million per loss and in the aggregate. It includes a per claim self-insured retention in the amount of $250,000 and a step-up to a $500,000 self-insured retention after we pay $1.0 million in retained costs. As we expand our services into additional markets, such as fixed-price remediation with insurance and unexploded ordinance (UXO) services, we obtain the necessary types of insurance coverages for such activities, as required by our clients.
We obtain insurance coverage through a broker that is experienced in the professional liability field. The broker and our risk manager regularly review the adequacy of our insurance coverage. However, because there are various exclusions and retentions under our insurance policies, or an insurance carrier may become insolvent, there can be no assurance that all potential liabilities will be covered by our insurance or paid by our carrier.
We evaluate the risk associated with uninsured claims. If we determine that an uninsured claim may be probable, we establish an appropriate reserve. A reserve is not established if we determine that the claim has no merit. Our historic levels of insurance coverage and reserves have been adequate. However, partially or completely uninsured claims, if successful and of significant magnitude, could have a material adverse effect on our business.
As of October 3, 2004, we had more than 8,600 total employees, including more than 7,800 full-time equivalent employees. Our professional staff includes archaeologists, biologists, chemical engineers, chemists, civil engineers, computer scientists, economists, electrical engineers, environmental engineers, environmental scientists, geologists, hydrogeologists, mechanical engineers, oceanographers, project managers, radio frequency engineers and toxicologists. As of October 3, 2004, we had 170 employees represented by 13 labor organizations. We consider the relationships with our employees to be good. We believe that our ability to retain and expand our staff of qualified professionals will be an important factor in determining our future growth and success. To date, we believe that we have been successful in recruiting qualified employees, but there is no assurance that we will continue to be successful in the future.
On certain engagements, we supplement our consultants with independent contractors. We believe that the practice of retaining independent contractors on an engagement basis provides us with significant flexibility in adjusting professional personnel levels in response to changes in demand for our services.
Set forth below and elsewhere in this Report and in other documents we file with the SEC are risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results contemplated by the forward-looking statements contained in the Report.
Our quarterly operating results may fluctuate significantly, which could have a negative effect on the price of our common stock
Our quarterly revenue, expenses and operating results may fluctuate significantly because of a number of factors, including:
Variations in any of these factors could cause significant fluctuations in our operating results from quarter to quarter and could result in net losses.
Downturns in the financial markets and reductions in state and local government budgets could negatively impact the capital spending of our clients and adversely affect our revenue and operating results
Downturns in the capital markets can impact the spending patterns of certain clients. Our state and local government clients may face budget deficits that prohibit them from funding new or existing projects. In addition, our existing and potential clients may either postpone entering into new contracts or request price concessions. The difficult financing and economic conditions are also causing some of our clients to delay payments for services we perform, thereby increasing the average number of days our receivables are outstanding. Further, these conditions may result in the inability of some of our clients to pay us for services that we have already performed. If we are not able to reduce our costs quickly enough to respond to the revenue decline from these clients, our operating results may be
adversely affected. Accordingly, these factors affect our ability to forecast with any accuracy our future revenue and earnings from business areas that may be adversely impacted by market conditions.
The value of our common stock could continue to be volatile
Our common stock has experienced substantial price volatility. In addition, the stock market has experienced extreme price and volume fluctuations that have affected the market price of many companies and that have often been unrelated to the operating performance of these companies. The overall market and the price of our common stock may continue to fluctuate greatly. The trading price of our common stock may be significantly affected by various factors, including:
Additionally, volatility or a lack of positive performance in our stock price may adversely affect our ability to retain key employees, many of whom are granted stock options, the value of which is dependent on the performance of our stock price.
We derive the majority of our revenue from government agencies, and any disruption in government funding or in our relationship with those agencies could adversely affect our business
In fiscal 2004, we derived approximately 59.9% of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, from contracts with federal, state and local government agencies. Federal government agencies are among our most significant clients. These agencies generated 43.9% of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, in fiscal 2004 as follows: 26.7% from the DoD, 6.6% from the EPA, 4.8% from the DOE and 5.8% from various other federal agencies. A significant amount of this revenue is derived under multi-year contracts, many of which are appropriated on an annual basis. As a result, at the beginning of a project, the related contract may be only partially funded, and additional funding is normally committed only as appropriations are made in each subsequent year. Our backlog includes only the projects that have funding appropriated.
The demand for our government-related services is generally related to the level of government program funding. Accordingly, the success and further development of our business depends, in large part, upon the continued funding of these government programs and upon our ability to obtain contracts under these programs. There are several factors that could materially affect our government contracting business, including the following:
These and other factors could cause government agencies to delay or cancel programs, to reduce their orders under existing contracts, to exercise their rights to terminate contracts or not to exercise contract options for renewals or extensions. Any of these actions could have a material adverse effect on our revenue or timing of contract payments from these agencies.
Our failure to properly manage projects may result in additional costs or claims
Our engagements often involve large-scale, complex projects. The quality of our performance on such projects depends in large part upon our ability to manage the relationship with our clients, and to effectively manage the project and deploy appropriate resources, including third-party contractors and our own personnel, in a timely manner. If we miscalculate the resources or time we need to complete a project with capped or fixed fees, or the resources or time we need to meet contractual milestones, our operating results could be adversely affected. Further, any defects or errors, or failures to meet our clients' expectations, could result in claims for damages against us. Our contracts generally limit our liability for damages that arise from negligent acts, errors, mistakes or omissions in rendering services to our clients. However, we cannot be sure that these contractual provisions will protect us from liability for damages in the event we are sued.
There are risks associated with our acquisition strategy that could adversely impact our business and operating results
A significant part of our growth strategy is to acquire other companies that complement our lines of business or that broaden our technical capabilities and geographic presence. We expect to continue to acquire companies as an element of our growth strategy. Acquisitions involve certain known and unknown risks that could cause our actual growth or operating results to differ from our expectations or the expectations of securities analysts. For example:
In addition, our acquisition strategy may divert management's attention away from our primary service offerings, result in the loss of key clients or key employees, and expose us to unanticipated problems or legal liabilities, including responsibility as a successor-in-interest for undisclosed or contingent liabilities of acquired businesses or assets.
Further, acquisitions may also cause us to:
Finally, acquired companies that derive a significant portion of their revenue from the federal government and that do not follow the same cost accounting policies and billing practices as we do may be subject to larger cost disallowances for greater periods than we typically encounter. If we fail to determine the existence of unallowable costs and establish appropriate reserves in advance of an acquisition, we may be exposed to material unanticipated liabilities, which could have a material adverse effect on our business.
If we are not able to successfully manage our growth strategy, our business and results of operations may be adversely affected
We have grown rapidly over the last several years. Our growth presents numerous managerial, administrative, operational and other challenges. Our ability to manage the growth of our operations will require us to continue to improve our management information systems and our other internal systems and controls. In addition, our growth will increase our need to attract, develop, motivate and retain both our management and professional employees. The inability of our management to effectively manage our growth or the inability of our employees to achieve anticipated performance could have a material adverse effect on our business.
Our use of the percentage-of-completion method of accounting could result in reduction or reversal of previously recorded revenue and profits
We account for most of our contracts on the percentage-of-completion method of accounting. Generally, our use of this method results in recognition of revenue and profit ratably over the life of the contract, based on the proportion of costs incurred to date to total costs expected to be incurred. The effect of revisions to revenue and estimated costs, including the achievement of award and other fees, is recorded when the amounts are known and can be reasonably estimated. Such revisions could occur in any period and their effects could be material. The uncertainties inherent in the estimating process make it possible for actual costs to vary from estimates, including reductions or reversals of previously recorded revenue and profit, and such differences could be material.
Adverse resolution of an Internal Revenue Service examination process may harm our operating results or financial condition
We are currently under examination by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for fiscal years 1997 through 2002. The major issue raised by the IRS relates to the $14.5 million of research and experimentation credits (R&E credits) that we recognized during the years under examination. The amount of credits recognized for financial statement purposes represents the amount that we estimate will be ultimately realizable. Should the IRS determine that the amount of R&E credits to which we are entitled is more or less than the amount recognized, we will recognize the difference and the change in our aggregate estimate as income tax expense in the period in which the determination is made.
The loss of key personnel or our inability to attract and retain qualified personnel could significantly disrupt our business
We depend upon the efforts and skills of our executive officers, senior managers and consultants. With limited exceptions, we do not have employment agreements with any of these individuals. The loss of the services of any of these key personnel could adversely affect our business. Although we have obtained non-compete agreements from certain principals and stockholders of companies we have acquired, we generally do not have non-compete or employment agreements with key employees who were once equity holders of these companies. We do not maintain key-man life insurance policies on any of our executive officers or senior managers.
Our future growth and success depends on our ability to attract and retain qualified scientists and engineers. The market for these professionals is competitive and we may not be able to attract and retain such professionals. We typically grant these employees stock options and a reduction in our stock price could impact our ability to retain these professionals.
If we do not successfully implement our new enterprise resource planning system, our cash flows may be impaired and we may incur further costs to integrate or upgrade our systems
In fiscal 2004, we began implementation of a new company-wide enterprise resource planning (ERP) software system, principally for accounting and project management. In the event we do not complete the project successfully, we may experience reduced cash flows due to an inability to issue invoices to our clients and collect cash in a timely manner. It is also possible that the cost of completing this project could exceed our current projections and negatively impact future operating results.
Our international operations expose us to risks such as foreign currency fluctuations, different business cultures, laws and regulations
During fiscal 2004, we derived approximately 2.3% of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, from international clients. Some contracts with our international clients are denominated in foreign currencies. As such, these contracts contain inherent risks including foreign currency exchange risk and the risk associated with expatriating funds from foreign countries. In addition, certain expenses are also denominated in foreign currencies. If our revenue and expenses denominated in foreign currencies increases, our exposure to foreign currency fluctuations may also increase. We periodically enter into forward exchange contracts to mitigate such foreign currency exposures.
In addition, the different business cultures associated with international operations may not be fully appreciated before we sign an agreement, and thereby expose us to risk. Likewise, international laws and regulations, such as foreign tax and labor laws, need to be understood prior to signing a contract. For these reasons, pricing and executing international contracts is more difficult and carries more risk than pricing and executing domestic contracts. Our experience has also shown that it is typically more difficult to collect on international work that has been performed and billed.
Our revenue from commercial clients is significant, and the credit risks associated with certain of these clients could adversely affect our operating results
In fiscal 2004, we derived approximately 37.8% of our revenue, net of subcontractor costs, from commercial clients. Among these commercial clients is Nextel Operations, Inc., which carried a receivable balance of approximately 18.0% of our accounts receivables as of October 3, 2004. We rely upon the financial stability and creditworthiness of these clients. To the extent the credit quality of these clients deteriorates or these clients seek bankruptcy protection, our ability to collect our receivables, and ultimately our operating results, may be adversely affected. Periodically, we have experienced bad debt losses.
As a government contractor, we are subject to a number of procurement rules and regulations and other public sector liabilities, any deemed violation of which could lead to fines or penalties or lost business
We must comply with and are affected by laws and regulations relating to the formation, administration and performance of government contracts. For example, we must comply with FAR, the Truth in Negotiations Act, the CAS and DoD security regulations, as well as many other rules and regulations. These laws and regulations affect how we do business with our clients and, in some instances, impose added costs on our business. A violation of these laws and regulations could result in the imposition of fines and penalties against us or the termination of our contracts. Moreover, as a federal government contractor, we must maintain our status as a responsible contractor. Failure to do so could lead to suspension or debarment, making us ineligible for federal government contracts and potentially ineligible for state and local government contracts.
Most of our government contracts are awarded through a regulated competitive bidding process, and the inability to complete existing government contracts or win new government contracts over an extended period could harm our operations and adversely affect our future revenue
Most of our government contracts are awarded through a regulated competitive bidding process. Some government contracts are awarded to multiple competitors, which increases overall competition and pricing pressure and may require us to make sustained post-award efforts to realize revenues under the government contracts. In addition, government clients can generally terminate or modify their contracts at their convenience. Moreover, even if we are qualified to work on a new government contract, we might not be awarded the contract because of existing government policies designed to
protect small businesses and underrepresented minority contractors. The inability to complete existing government contracts or win new government contracts over an extended period could harm our operations and adversely affect our future revenue.
A negative government audit could result in an adverse adjustment of our revenue and costs, could impair our reputation and could result in civil and criminal penalties
Government agencies, such as the DCAA, routinely audit and investigate government contractors. These agencies review a contractor's performance under its contracts, cost structure and compliance with applicable laws, regulations and standards. If the agencies determine through these audits or reviews that we improperly allocated costs to specific contracts, they will not reimburse us for these costs. Therefore, an audit could result in substantial adjustments to our revenue and costs.
Further, although we have internal controls in place to oversee our government contracts, no assurance can be given that these controls are sufficient to prevent isolated violations of applicable laws, regulations and standards. If the agencies determine that we or one of our subcontractors engaged in improper conduct, we may be subject to civil or criminal penalties and administrative sanctions, payments, fines and suspension or prohibition from doing business with the government, any of which could materially affect our financial condition. In addition, we could suffer serious harm to our reputation.
Our business and operating results could be adversely affected by our inability to accurately estimate the overall risks, revenue or costs on a contract
We generally enter into three principal types of contracts with our clients: fixed-price, time-and-materials, and cost-plus. Under our fixed-price contracts, we receive a fixed price irrespective of the actual costs we incur and, consequently, we are exposed to a number of risks. These risks include underestimation of costs, problems with new technologies, unforeseen costs or difficulties, delays beyond our control, price increases for materials, and economic and other changes that may occur during the contract period. Under our time-and-materials contracts, we are paid for labor at negotiated hourly billing rates and for other expenses. Profitability on these contracts is driven by billable headcount and cost control. Under our cost-plus contracts, some of which are subject to contract ceiling amounts, we are reimbursed for allowable costs and fees, which may be fixed or performance-based. If our costs exceed the contract ceiling or are not allowable under the provisions of the contract or any applicable regulations, we may not be able to obtain reimbursement for all such costs.
Accounting for a contract requires judgments relative to assessing the contract's estimated risks, revenue and costs, and on making judgments on other technical issues. Due to the size and nature of many of our contracts, the estimation of overall risk, revenue and cost at completion is complicated and subject to many variables. Changes in underlying assumptions, circumstances or estimates may also adversely affect future period financial performance. If we are unable to accurately estimate the overall revenues or costs on a contract, then we may experience a lower profit or incur a loss on the contract.
Our backlog is subject to cancellation and unexpected adjustments, and is an uncertain indicator of future operating results
Our backlog as of October 3, 2004 was approximately $1.08 billion. We cannot guarantee that the revenue projected in our backlog will be realized or, if realized, will result in profits. In addition, project cancellations or scope adjustments may occur, from time to time, with respect to contracts reflected in our backlog. For example, certain of our contracts with the federal government and other clients are terminable at the discretion of the client with or without cause. These types of backlog
reductions could adversely affect our revenue and margins. Accordingly, our backlog as of any particular date is an uncertain indicator of our future earnings.
The consolidation of our client base could adversely impact our business
Recently, there has been consolidation within our current and potential commercial client base, particularly in the telecommunications industry. Future consolidation activity could have the effect of reducing the number of our current or potential clients, and lead to an increase in the bargaining power of our remaining clients. This potential increase in bargaining power could create greater competitive pressures and effectively limit the rates we charge for our services. As a result, our revenue and margins could be adversely affected.
If our partners fail to perform their contractual obligations on a project, we could be exposed to legal liability, loss of reputation and profit reduction or loss on the project
We occasionally perform projects jointly with outside partners in order to enter into subcontracts and other contractual arrangements so that we can jointly bid and perform on a particular project. Success on these joint projects depends in large part on whether our partners fulfill their contractual obligations satisfactorily. If any of our partners fails to satisfactorily perform their contractual obligations as a result of financial or other difficulties, we may be required to make additional investments and provide additional services in order to make up for our partner's shortfall. If we are unable to adequately address our partner's performance issues, then our client could terminate the joint project, exposing us to legal liability, loss of reputation and reduced profit or loss on the project.
Our inability to find qualified subcontractors could adversely affect the quality of our service and our ability to perform under certain contracts
Under some of our contracts, we depend on the efforts and skills of subcontractors for the performance of certain tasks. Our reliance on subcontractors varies from project to project. In fiscal 2004, subcontractor costs comprised 29.7% of our revenue. The absence of qualified subcontractors with whom we have a satisfactory relationship could adversely affect the quality of our service and our ability to perform under some of our contracts.
Changes in existing environmental laws, regulations and programs could reduce demand for our environmental services, which could cause our revenue to decline
A significant amount of our resource management business is generated either directly or indirectly as a result of existing federal and state laws, regulations and programs related to pollution and environmental protection. Accordingly, a relaxation or repeal of these laws and regulations, or changes in governmental policies regarding the funding, implementation or enforcement of these programs, could result in a decline in demand for environmental services that may have a material adverse effect on our revenue.
Our industry is highly competitive and we may be unable to compete effectively
We provide specialized consulting, engineering and technical services in the areas of resource management, infrastructure and communications to a broad range of government and commercial sector clients. The market for our services is highly competitive and we compete with many other firms. These firms range from small regional firms to large national firms. Some of our competitors have achieved substantially more market penetration in certain of the markets in which we compete. In addition, some of our competitors have substantially more experience, financial resources and/or financial flexibility than we do.
We compete for projects and engagements with a number of competitors that can vary from one to 100 firms. Historically, clients have chosen among competing firms based on technical capabilities, the quality and timeliness of the firm's service, and geographic presence. If competitive pressures force us to make price concessions or otherwise reduce prices for our services, then our revenue and margins will decline and our results from operations would be harmed.
Restrictive covenants in our Credit Agreement and the Note Purchase Agreement relating to our senior secured notes may restrict our ability to pursue certain business strategies
Our Credit Agreement and the Note Purchase Agreement relating to our senior secured notes restrict our ability to, among other things:
Our Credit Agreement and Note Purchase Agreement also require that we maintain certain financial ratios, which we may not be able to achieve. The covenants in these agreements may impair our ability to finance future operations or capital needs or to engage in certain business activities. Refer to Note 7, "Long-Term Obligations," included under the heading "Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements" in our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders, which is incorporated by reference herein.
Our services expose us to significant risks of liability and it may be difficult to obtain or maintain adequate insurance coverage
Our services involve significant risks of professional and other liabilities that may substantially exceed the fees we derive from our services. Our business activities could expose us to potential liability under various environmental laws and under workplace health and safety regulations. In addition, we sometimes assume liability by contract under indemnification agreements. We cannot predict the magnitude of such potential liabilities.
We obtain insurance from third parties to cover our potential risks and liabilities. It is possible that we may not be able to obtain adequate insurance to meet our needs, may have to pay an excessive amount for the insurance coverage we want or may not be able to acquire any insurance for certain types of business risks.
Our liability for damages due to legal proceedings may harm our operating results or financial condition
We are a party to lawsuits in the normal course of business. Various legal proceedings are currently pending against us and certain of our subsidiaries alleging, among other things, breach of contract or tort in connection with the performance of professional services. We cannot predict the outcome of these proceedings with certainty. In some actions, parties are seeking damages that exceed
our insurance coverage or for which we are not insured. If we sustain damages that exceed our insurance coverage or that are not covered by insurance, there could be a material adverse effect on our business, operating results or financial condition.
We may be precluded from providing certain services due to conflict of interest issues
Many of our clients are concerned about potential or actual conflicts of interest in retaining management consultants. Federal government agencies have formal policies against continuing or awarding contracts that would create actual or potential conflicts of interest with other activities of a contractor. These policies, among other things, may prevent us from bidding for or performing government contracts resulting from or relating to certain work we have performed. In addition, services performed for a commercial or government client may create a conflict of interest that precludes or limits our ability to obtain work from other public or private organizations. We have, on occasion, declined to bid on projects because of these conflicts of interest issues.
Changes in accounting for equity-related compensation could impact the way we use stock-based compensation to attract and retain employees
The Financial Accounting Standards Board has issued its final standard on accounting for equity compensation. FASB Statement No. 123R, Share-Based Payment (FAS 123R), requires us to recognize, as an expense, the fair value of stock options and other equity-related compensation to employees. We may have significant and ongoing accounting charges that could reduce our overall net income. In addition, since we historically have used equity-related compensation as a component of our total employee compensation program, the accounting change could make the use of equity-related compensation less attractive to us and therefore make it more difficult to attract and retain employees. FAS 123R becomes effective for us at the beginning of the fourth quarter of fiscal 2005. We have not completed our evaluation or determined the impact of adopting FAS 123R.
Compliance with changing regulation of corporate governance and public disclosure will result in additional expenses
Changing laws, regulations and standards relating to corporate governance and public disclosure, including the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, new SEC regulations and Nasdaq Stock Market rules, are creating additional disclosure and other compliance requirements for us. We are committed to maintaining high standards of corporate governance and public disclosure. As a result, we intend to invest appropriate resources to comply with evolving standards, and this investment may result in increased general and administrative expenses and a diversion of management time and attention from revenue-generating activities to compliance activities.
Problems such as computer viruses or terrorism may disrupt our operations and harm our operating results
Despite our implementation of network security measures, our servers are vulnerable to computer viruses, break-ins and similar disruptions from unauthorized tampering with our computer systems. Any such event could have a material adverse effect on our business, operating results and financial condition. In addition, the effects of war or acts of terrorism could have a material adverse effect on our business, operating results and financial condition. The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 disrupted commerce and intensified uncertainty regarding the U.S. economy and other economies. The continued threat of terrorism and heightened security and military action in response to this threat, or any future acts of terrorism, may cause further disruptions and create further uncertainties. To the extent that such disruptions or uncertainties result in delays or cancellations of customer contracts, our business, operating results and financial condition could be materially and adversely affected.
Our corporate headquarters is located in Pasadena, California. This facility contains approximately 68,000 square feet of office space. In addition, we lease office space in over 350 locations in the United States. In total, our facilities contain approximately 2.4 million square feet of office space and are subject to leases that expire beyond fiscal year 2004. We also rent additional office space on a month-to-month basis.
We believe that our existing facilities are adequate to meet current requirements and that suitable additional or substitute space will be available as needed to accommodate any expansion of operations and for additional offices.
For additional information concerning our obligations under leases, see Note 11, "Leases," included under the heading "Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements" in our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders, which is incorporated by reference herein.
We are subject to certain claims and lawsuits typically filed against the engineering and consulting professions in the ordinary course of business, primarily alleging professional errors or omissions. We carry professional liability insurance, subject to certain deductibles and policy limits against such claims. While the outcome of these matters is currently not determinable, we do not expect that the ultimate costs to resolve these matters will have a material adverse effect on our consolidated financial position, results of operations or cash flows. See "Item 1. BusinessPotential Liability and Insurance."
We continue to be involved in a contract dispute with Horsehead Industries, Inc., doing business as Zinc Corporation of America (ZCA). In April 2002, a Washington County Court in Bartlesville, Oklahoma dismissed with prejudice our counter-claims relating to receivables due from ZCA and other costs. In December 2002, the Court rendered a judgment for $4.1 million and unquantified legal fees against us in this dispute. In February 2004, the Court quantified the previous award and ordered us to pay approximately $2.6 million in ZCA's attorneys' and consultants' fees and expenses, together with post-judgment interest.
We have posted bonds and filed appeals with respect to the earlier judgments. On December 27, 2004, the Court of Civil Appeals of the State of Oklahoma rendered a decision relating to certain aspects of our appeals. In its decision, the Court vacated the $4.1 million verdict against us. In addition, the Court upheld the dismissal of our counter-claims. The Court has not yet ruled on the status of ZCA's attorneys' and consultants' fees and expenses. Several legal alternatives remain available to both parties including appeals to the Oklahoma Supreme Court. Although our legal counsel in these matters continues to believe that a favorable outcome is reasonably possible, final outcome of these matters cannot yet be accurately predicted. As a result, we continue to maintain the amounts recorded in the restated fiscal 2002 financial statements, consisting of $4.1 million in accrued liabilities relating to the original judgment, and a $2.6 million accrual for ZCA's attorneys' and consultants' fees and expenses. Once the legal proceedings relating to ZCA are finally resolved, excess accruals, if any, will be reversed.
Item 4. Submission of Matters to a Vote of Security Holders
Item 5. Market for Registrant's Common Equity and Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Repurchases of Equity Securities
The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information appearing under the heading "Securities Information" in our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders.
The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information appearing under the heading "Selected Consolidated Financial Data" in our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders.
The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information appearing under the heading "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" in our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders.
The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information appearing under the heading "Financial Market Risks" in the "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" section of our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders.
The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information appearing under the headings "Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm," "Consolidated Balance Sheets," "Consolidated Statements of Operations," "Consolidated Statements of Stockholders' Equity," "Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows," and "Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements" in our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders.
Item 9. Changes in and Disagreements with Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure
Based on our management's evaluation (with the participation of our principal executive officer and principal financial officer), our principal executive officer and principal financial officer have concluded that, as of the period covered by this Report, our disclosure controls and procedures (as defined in Rules 13a-15(e) and 15d-15(e) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the Exchange Act)), were ineffective with respect to fiscal years 2001 through 2004 to ensure that information required to be disclosed by us in reports that we file or submit under the Exchange Act is recorded, processed, summarized and reported within the time periods specified in Securities and Exchange Commission rules and forms. As disclosed herein, upon review, we have restated our financial statements for the fiscal years ended in 2001 through 2003. See Note 2 to our Consolidated Financial Statements included in our 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders.
Management believes that a number of factors contributed to conditions that led to the need to restate prior years' financial statements and, as a result, we have concluded that a material weakness existed in our internal controls. The principal factors contributing to this condition were the failure to properly apply generally accepted accounting principles in certain project and litigation related circumstances and insufficient coordination between accounting and operational personnel on project
management and forecast disciplines. Management has made changes in our management and organizational structure, including changing the reporting line of accounting personnel from operating units to the Corporate CFO and Controller, and is continuing to address some of the training issues related to project management and accounting and strengthen the accounting function and personnel in various operating units. Until the balance of these changes are completed, the material weakness continues to exist. Management presently anticipates that these changes necessary to remediate this weakness will be in place by the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2005.
Other than as described above, there was no change in our internal control over financial reporting during our fourth fiscal quarter that has materially affected, or is reasonably likely to materially affect, our internal control over financial reporting.
Item 9B. Other Information
The information required by this item relating to our directors and nominees, and compliance with Section 16(a) of the Exchange Act is included under the captions "Proposal No. 1Election of Directors" and "Ownership of SecuritiesSection 16(a) Beneficial Ownership Reporting Compliance" in our Proxy Statement related to the 2005 Annual Meeting of Stockholders and is incorporated herein by reference.
The information required by this item relating to our executive officers is included under the caption "Information Concerning Our Executive Officers" in our Proxy Statement related to the 2005 Annual Meeting of Stockholders and is incorporated herein by reference.
We have adopted a code of ethics that applies to our principal executive officer and all members of our finance department, including our principal financial officer and principal accounting officer. This code of ethics, entitled "Finance Code of Professional Conduct," is posted on our website. The Internet address for our website is www.tetratech.com, and the code of ethics may be found through a link to the Investors section of our website. We intend to satisfy the disclosure requirement under Item 5.05 of Form 8-K for any amendment to, or waiver from a provision of this code of ethics by posting any such information on our website, at the address and location specified above.
The information required by this item is included under the captions "Proposal No. 1Election of DirectorsDirector Compensation" and "Executive Compensation" in our Proxy Statement related to the 2005 Annual Meeting of Stockholders and is incorporated herein by reference.
Item 12. Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters
The information required by this item relating to security ownership of certain beneficial owners and management, and securities authorized for issuance under equity compensation plans, is included under the captions "Ownership of Securities" and "Equity Compensation Plan Information" in our Proxy Statement related to the 2005 Annual Meeting of Stockholders and is incorporated herein by reference.
The information required by this item is included under the caption "Executive Compensation" in our Proxy Statement related to the 2005 Annual Meeting of Stockholders and is incorporated herein by reference.
The information required by this item is included under the captions "Independent Auditors" and "Policy on Audit Committee Pre-Approval of Audit and Permissible Non-Audit Services of Independent Auditors" in our Proxy Statement related to the 2005 Annual Meeting of Stockholders and is incorporated herein by this reference.
INDEX TO FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND FINANCIAL STATEMENT SCHEDULE
To the Stockholders of Tetra Tech, Inc.:
Our audit of the consolidated financial statements referred to in our report dated December 30, 2004 appearing in the 2004 Annual Report to Shareholders of Tetra Tech, Inc. (which report and consolidated financial statements are incorporated by reference in this Annual Report on Form 10-K) also included an audit of the financial statement schedule as of and for the year ended October 3, 2004 listed in Item 15(a)(2) of this Form 10-K. In our opinion, this financial statement schedule presents fairly, in all material respects, the information set forth therein when read in conjunction with the related consolidated financial statements.
/s/ PRICEWATERHOUSECOOPERS LLP
REPORT OF INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM
To the Stockholders of Tetra Tech, Inc.:
We have audited the consolidated financial statements of Tetra Tech, Inc. and its subsidiaries as of September 28, 2003 and for each of the two years in the period ended September 28, 2003, and have issued our report thereon dated December 12, 2003 (December 30, 2004 as to the effects of the restatement discussed in Note 2) which expresses an unqualified opinion and includes explanatory paragraphs relating to the restatement described in Note 2 and the change in the Company's method of accounting for goodwill and other intangible assets effective September 30, 2002; such financial statements and report are included in your 2004 Annual Report to Stockholders and are incorporated herein by reference. Our audits also included the financial statement schedule of Tetra Tech, Inc. and its subsidiaries, listed in Item 15(a)(2). This financial statement schedule is the responsibility of the Company's management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion based on our audits. In our opinion, such financial statement schedule, when considered in relation to the basic consolidated financial statements taken as a whole, presents fairly, in all material respects, the information set forth therein.
/s/ DELOITTE & TOUCHE LLP
TETRA TECH, INC.
Pursuant to the requirements of Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the registrant has duly caused this Report on Form 10-K to be signed on its behalf by the undersigned, thereunto duly authorized.
POWER OF ATTORNEY
KNOW ALL PERSONS BY THESE PRESENTS, that each person whose signature appears below constitutes and appoints Li-San Hwang and David W. King, jointly and severally, his attorney-in-fact, each with the full power of substitution, for such person, in any and all capacities, to sign any and all amendments to this Annual Report on Form 10-K, and to file the same, with all exhibits thereto and other documents in connection therewith, with the Securities and Exchange Commission, granting unto said attorney-in-fact and agent full power and authority to do and perform each and every act and thing requisite and necessary to be done in connection therewith, as fully to all intents and purposes as he might do or could do in person, hereby ratifying and confirming all that each of said attorneys-in-fact and agents, or his substitute, may do or cause to be done by virtue hereof.
Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, this Report on Form 10-K has been signed below by the following persons on behalf of the registrant and in the capacities and on the dates indicated.
INDEX TO EXHIBITS