Tue, Nov 14, 2017 - Page 12 News List

Phison net profit jumps on seasonal demand

PEAK SEASON:Phison Electronics Corp reports that a growth momentum is extending into this quarter, as the company shipped more than 1 million solid state drives last month

By Lisa Wang  /  Staff reporter

Phison Electronics Corp (群聯電子), a designer of NAND flash memory controllers and modules, yesterday said net profit hit a new record last quarter, as robust demand for embedded multimedia controllers (eMMCs) used in smartphones during the peak season exacerbated a supply crunch.

Net profit increased about 8 percent to NT$1.6 billion (US$53 million) during the quarter that ended on Sept. 30, compared with NT$1.48 billion in the third quarter last year, the company said in a statement after the board directors approved the financial statement yesterday.

That translated into earnings per share of NT$8.12 last quarter, up from NT$7.61 per share a year earlier.

That brings the company’s cumulative profit in the first three quarters to NT$4.55 billion, or NT$22.69 per share, surging 35 percent from NT$3.37 billion, or 17.18 per share a year earlier.

“Phison performed well in net profit during the third quarter compared with its revenue, thanks to spiraling shipments in its major products. Shipments have hit all-time highs,” Phison said in a statement.

Last quarter, revenue shrank 9.43 percent to NT$11.17 billion from NT$12.34 billion in the same period last year, the statement said.

Phison attributed the decline to a shift in its new profit enhancement strategy of shipping higher-margin chips and modules over less profitable ones due to unresolved memory chip supply constraints.

Shipments of eMMCs increased to 83.5 million units last quarter, benefiting from seasonal demand for smartphones, Phison said.

EMMCs are high-speed storage media and serve as controller modules as well, which are used to store photographs and multimedia files.

Shipments of controllers used in solid-state drives (SSDs), mainly for PCs, climbed 26 percent annually to a record high of about 3 million units.

That will help boost total SSD shipments this year to 24 million units, the chip designer said, implying a double-digit percent growth in shipments this quarter.

As the growth momentum is extending into this quarter, Phison said it shipped more than 1 million units last month.

The smartphone sector is entering a slow season this quarter, the company said.

Phison said its latest embedded flash memory controller, dubbed PS8313, has passed qualification tests by mobile chipmakers Qualcomm Inc and HiSilicion Technologies Co (海思半導體), which is owned by Huawei Technologies Co (華為).

Phison founding chairman Pua Khein-seng (潘健成) in September said that demand would be much stronger this quarter than last quarter due to seasonal effects.

However, short memory chip supplies might continue to limit the company’s revenue growth.

Toshiba Corp, a major NAND flash memory chip supplier to the firm, has decided to reduce supply, he said.

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