Tue, Nov 10, 2015 - Page 13 News List

Sino-America expects to return to black on the back of healing market demand

By Lisa Wang  /  Staff reporter

Local solar wafer maker Sino-America Silicon Products Inc (SAS, 中美晶) said it expects its core solar business to return to black this year, after recovering demand helped the company end the past quarter with a profit.

SAS has remained dependent on its silicon wafer subsidiary GlobalWafers Co Ltd (環球晶圓) to make a profit over the past few quarters due to the persistent slump in solar industry.

“SAS’ solar factories returned to full operation in the third quarter as solar industry started to recover. A pickup in prices for solar wafers, cells and modules helped boost revenues and gross profits,” SAS said in a statement.

“As gross profits and operating profits for the solar business returned to positive territory in the third quarter, SAS aims to bring its solar business to profits for the entirety of this year,” it said.

In the quarter ending on Sept. 30, SAS made NT$463 million (US$14.1 million) in net profit, or NT$0.5 per share.

That brought the company’s net profits in the first three quarters’ to NT$861 million, or NT$0.86 a share, down 41 percent from NT$1.47 billion, or NT$2.46 a share, in the same period of last year.

Operating profits jumped 29.1 percent annually to NT$1.78 billion in the first three quarters, from NT$1.38 billion a year ago.

GlobalWafers, the world’s No.6 silicon wafer supplier, yesterday reported NT$1.58 billion in net profit for the first nine months of the year, up 2 percent annually. Gross margin rose to 27 percent in the January-September period, from 23 percent in the prior year.

Solar cell maker Gintech Energy Corp (昱晶) reported NT$139 million in net profit for last quarter, compared with losses of NT$332 million in the second quarter, ending four quarters of losses for Gintech. In the first three quarters, Gintech had lost NT$389 million.

Gross margin improved to 9.7 percent last quarter, compared with minus-2.6 percent in the second quarter of this year, the company said.

The company attributed the improvement to higher average selling price (ASP) and utilization rate.

Gintech expects profits to be higher in the first quarter of next year as ASP would rise between 15 percent and 20 percent after a new plant in Thailand comes online.

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