Chipmaker Intel Corp on Thursday reported record revenue and profits last year despite a slight slowdown in the fourth quarter related to the impact of Thailand’s floods on the personal computer industry.
Revenues soared in the Asia-Pacific region, excluding Japan, followed by modest gains in the Americas and Europe, the company said.
Intel said net revenues climbed 24 percent to US$54.0 billion for the 12 months to Dec. 31.
Net income for the year was up 12.9 percent to US$12.9 billion and earnings per share rose 19 percent to US$2.39.
Revenues were boosted by acquisitions early in the year of McAfee and the Infineon wireless division, but even excluding them, Intel said, net revenues were up by 15.6 percent.
Net income rose just 6 percent in the fourth quarter year-on-year, totaling US$3.4 billion, as the PC industry slowed after being hit by the widespread flooding in Thailand, a disk-drive manufacturing hub.
“As a result of the hard disk drive shortages we saw a reduction of orders for microprocessors, as customers reduced inventories across the supply chain,” the company said in a statement.
“Despite this reduction in inventory levels, it is our belief that the shortage did not impact actual sales of personal computers in the fourth quarter, with demand trends playing out as expected,” it added.
Intel president and chief executive Paul Otellini called the year “exceptional.”
“With outstanding execution the company performed superbly, growing revenue by more than US$10 billion and eclipsing all annual revenue and earnings records,” he said.
“With a tremendous product and technology pipeline for 2012, we’re excited about the global growth opportunities presented by ultrabook systems, the data center, security and the introduction of Intel-powered smartphones and tablets,” he added.
Otellini told analysts he expects continuing strong demand from the new market for extra-thin notebook computers, known generically as ultrabooks, but also a brand name claimed by Intel for all notebooks using its chips.
“We saw record notebook microprocessor units in 2011,” help-ed by the launch of that market, Otellini told analysts in a conference call.
Intel shares closed up 0.95 percent at US$25.63 ahead of the earnings release.
The company said it would boost capital expenditures by 14 percent to US$18.3 billion this year as it develops its capacity to produce 14-nanometer chips.
Chief financial officer Stacy Smith said the company expected “high single-digit revenue growth” this year and that gross margins, a key measure of the health of chipmakers, would be in the range of 64 percent, compared to 62.5 percent this year.