Wed, Jul 02, 2014 - Page 14 News List

Ichia reports record sales

HISTORIC HIGH:Ichia Technologies bucked the trend in the flexible printed-circuit business because it has a different client base from local peers, a researcher said

By Kevin Chen  /  Staff reporter

Handset keypad maker Ichia Technologies Inc (毅嘉科技) yesterday reported the highest sales for more than two years last quarter, and analysts forecast that sales and earnings would climb even higher this quarter when major clients launch new products.

The company’s consolidated revenue reached NT$3.16 billion (US$105.66 million) in the April-to-June quarter, up 13.7 percent from NT$2.78 billion in the previous quarter and 26.62 percent higher than the NT$2.49 billion posted a year earlier.

The latest results were slightly higher than the forecast made by SinoPac Securities Co (永豐金證券) analyst Frank Kuo (郭勁甫), who predicted that revenue for last quarter would grow 12 percent quarterly and 26 percent annually.

Last month alone, sales rose 2 percent month-on-month and 38.19 percent year-on-year to NT$1.07 billion, the highest monthly level since December 2011, the Linkou District (林口), New Taipei City-based company said in a filing with the Taiwan Stock Exchange.

Wang Deng-cheng (王登城), co-head of Yuanta Securities Co’s (元大證券) technology research, said Ichia is less affected by market competition than domestic peers in the flexible printed-circuit business, because the company has a different client base.

The company manufactures conductive rubber keypads, plastic injected parts and customized keyboards mainly for handset clients.

Last quarter, sales generated from its flexible printed-circuit integrated components — used in mobile devices and automotive items — accounted for about 90 percent of its total sales, with major clients including AU Optronics Corp (友達), Innolux Corp (群創), E Ink Holdings Inc (元太), Toshiba Corp and BlackBerry Ltd, while those of mechanical integrated components made up the remaining 10 percent, including items used for BlackBerry devices’ QWERTY keyboards.

“In our view, Ichia is entering an upcycle, while peers are plateauing,” Wang said in a recent client note.

SinoPac forecast Ichia would report a net income of NT$300 million, or earnings per share of NT$0.89, for last quarter, compared with a net income of NT$205 million or NT$0.62 per share in the first quarter.

For the quarter that just started, the company is expected to see revenue grow further to NT$3.78 billion as BlackBerry is to launch new products this quarter, along with a rising contribution from its flexible printed-circuit components business, the brokerage said, adding that net income could hit a record level of NT$430 million or NT$1.29 per share.

Ichia shares yesterday rose by the daily maximum of 7 percent to close at NT$41.4 ahead of the release of its results, while the TAIEX edged up 0.52 percent.

This story has been updated since it was first published.

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