Wed, Dec 18, 2013 - Page 14 News List

Growth in flexible circuit boards to weaken: analyst

By Kevin Chen  /  Staff reporter

Three Taiwanese suppliers of Apple Inc’s flexible printed circuit boards (FPCBs) are likely to see weaker growth momentum next quarter after making record-high sales this quarter, a research report said.

In the report issued on Wednesday last week, SinoPac Securities Investment Service Corp (永豐投顧) analyst Herbert Liu (劉俊麟) said sales of the three FPCB makers — Flexium Interconnect Inc (台郡), Zhen Ding Technology Holding Ltd (臻鼎) and Career Technology Co (嘉聯益) — all increased by single-digit percentages last month from October, driven by strong demand for the iPhone 5S, iPad Air and iPad Mini Retina.

According to the companies’ sales data, both Flexium and Zhen Ding achieved record-high sales for the third consecutive month, last month. The former registered increases of 1 percent month-on-month and 27 percent year-on-year to NT$1.82 billion (US$61.2 million). The latter posted a 4 percent monthly increase and 21 percent annual rise to NT$7.78 billion.

Meanwhile, both Career’s sales were 9 percent higher than the previous month as well as the prior year at NT$1.62 billion.

As sales for this month are expected to gain from early demand ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday, which falls in late January next year, Flexium’s sales for this quarter are forecast to expand 35 percent from last quarter, SinoPac said in a report, while predicting a 26 percent sequential sales increase for both Zhen Ding and Career.

“These FPCB makers are likely to see softening business next quarter on seasonal impacts, product transition among major clients and fewer working days,” Liu said.

Zhen Ding would see its sales contract by 32 percent next quarter from this quarter and Career would see a sequential sales decline of 22 percent, SinoPac said.

SinoPac did not provide its sales forecast for Flexium next quarter, but KGI Securities Co (凱基證券) yesterday said the company’s sales would likely face a sequential contraction of 30.8 percent to NT$3.6 billion next quarter.

“The company’s sales for the first quarter of next year are expected to be affected by US clients adjusting the inventory of their smartphone components,” KGI analyst Bonny Weng (翁筱雯) said in a client note.

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