Mon, Jul 30, 2012 - Page 14 News List

Catcher report income drop, plant blast

CAUGHT OUT:The metal casing firm has reported a declining net income in the second quarter while also confirming a major industrial accident at one of its Chinese factories

By Kevin Chen  /  Staff reporter

Metal casing manufacturer Catcher Technology Co (可成科技) on Saturday reported declining net income in the second quarter, despite rising revenue and operating income for the quarter, because of higher income tax expenses on retained earnings.

The company, which counts Apple Inc, Dell Inc and Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC Corp (宏達電) among its major customers, said in a filing with the Taiwan Stock Exchange that net income for the April-to-June quarter was NT$1.52 billion (US$50.6 million), or NT$2.03 earnings per share (EPS).

The second-quarter figure fell 45.47 percent from NT$2.79 billion, or NT$3.72 in EPS, in the previous quarter and was 35.89 percent lower than the NT$2.37 billion, or NT$3.43 a share, that Catcher reported a year earlier.

In the first half, the company’s EPS was NT$5.75, compared with NT$6.29 the year before.

Catcher’s filing showed its quarterly revenue rose 11.44 percent to NT$9.65 billion from NT$8.66 billion in the first quarter and was 8.41 percent higher than NT$8.9 billion posted the previous year.

Operating income reached NT$3.34 billion in the second quarter, up 26.94 percent from NT$2.63 billion in the first quarter and 3.71 percent from NT$3.22 billion in the same period of last year.

Gross margin increased to 45.21 percent from 41.16 percent in the first quarter, but was lower than 47.06 percent a year ago, according to the filing.

Despite increases in quarterly revenue and operating income, the filing showed that sizeable tax expenses ate significantly into the company’s profits in the April-June period because of higher retained earnings.

Income tax expenses were NT$1.5 billion in the second quarter, an increase of 192.78 percent from NT$512.5 million in the first quarter and a surge of 126.03 percent from NT$663.84 million in the same period a year earlier, the filing showed.

Meanwhile, the company confirmed a gas leak accident occurred on Thursday last week at one of its Chinese factories in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, which left one person dead and injured a further four.

In separate filings submitted to the Taiwan Stock Exchange on Friday and Saturday, Catcher said the gas leaks happened at a factory run by its 100-percent owned subsidiary Topo Technology (Suzhou) Co (可勝科技).

Catcher said the accident occurred when a contractor and company employees were undertaking liquid waste disposal operations.

“Topo Technology is currently working on a liquid waste storage project to increase wastewater treatment efficiency. The incident happened on July 26 when operators were working to remove and transport the liquid waste to designated sites for treatment,” Catcher said in a filing on Saturday.

The company said it had launched an investigation into the matter and would collaborate with Chinese authorities during the investigation, adding that it has no impact on the company’s operations there.

“This is an isolated event, which has no direct relations with production, manufacturing processes or materials used,” the company said.

The incident came nine months after Catcher was forced to partially shut down Suzhou factories run by Topo Technology and another subsidiary, Meeca Technology (Suzhou) Co (可利科技), in October last year because of environmental disputes. The company is still waiting for the Chinese authorities’ approval to resume operations at the affected factories.

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