Mon, Oct 08, 2018 - Page 15 News List

Catcher revenue below expectations

FAST RESPONSE:The delayed release of Apple Inc’s cheaper iPhone XR affected sales, but cumulative revenue in the first three quarters still rose 9.5 percent to NT$66.25 billion

By Chen Cheng-hui  /  Staff reporter

Catcher Technology Co (可成), the nation’s leading supplier of light metal casings and enclosures for mobile devices, on Friday reported revenue of NT$25.09 billion (US$813.6 million) for last quarter, an increase of 20.9 percent from the previous quarter, but a decrease of 8.5 percent from a year earlier.

Sales growth in the July-to-September period failed to meet market expectations, which KGI Securities Investment Advisory Co (凱基投顧) attributed to the late release of Apple Inc’s iPhone XR.

Apple launched the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max globally on Sept. 21, but the cheaper 6.1-inch LCD iPhone XR would not reach the market until Oct. 26.

“Electronics manufacturing service providers had a limited iPhone XR output in September due to yield issues and are expected to see larger-scale production in the fourth quarter, with shipments ranging from 38 million to 40 million units,” KGI analyst Angela Hsiang (向子慧) said in a research note on Friday.

“Therefore, we forecast Catcher’s revenue to recover strongly this quarter, increasing 40 percent quarterly and 7 percent annually,” she said.

Catcher’s cumulative revenue in the first three quarters of this year reached its highest level for the same period at NT$66.25 billion, up 9.5 percent from NT$60.5 billion a year earlier, company data showed.

The robust growth was due to rising shipments for smartphone and notebook computer casings, analysts said.

It also reflected Catcher’s solid execution and fast response time, as well as the benefits of complete in-house tooling and offering whole packages in the casing manufacturing process, they said.

Catcher manufactures aluminum and magnesium-alloy casings for notebook computers, handsets and other consumer electronic devices. The Tainan-based company also supplies casings for MacBook laptops.

MacBook shipments are expected to increase later this month after last month’s small shipments, Hsiang said.

As such, Catcher’s full-year sales split would be adjusted as 40-60 for the first and second halves, rather than KGI’s previous projection of a 35-65 split, she said.

“Fourth-quarter revenue and earnings will reach this year’s peak,” Hsiang said, adding that Catcher’s revenue this year is projected to grow 8.6 percent annually to NT$101.36 billion.

However, due to the weak sales in the third quarter, Catcher’s earnings per share (EPS) this year would be revised down 10 percent to NT$39.08, while EPS is estimated to be NT$39.42 next year, compared with a previous forecast of NT$41.99, Hsiang said.

KGI has lowered its 12-month target price for Catcher stock to NT$407 from NT$470, valuing the stock at 12 times its estimated EPS of NT$33.92 between the third quarter of this year and the second quarter of next year.

Catcher shares on Friday fell 1.4 percent to close at NT$316.5 in Taipei trading.

The stock has fallen 12.21 percent in the past month amid concerns over delays and order cuts for the iPhone XR, as well as the outlook of the consumer electronics industry as a whole.

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