Genius Electronic Optical Co (玉晶光), which supplies camera lenses for Apple Inc’s iPhones, yesterday gave an upbeat outlook for demand next year, citing emerging 5G applications.
“We are eyeing many opportunities [for growth] next year when 5G smartphones come into play,” Genius president Lee Kuo (郭英理) told investors in an online conference call, forecasting increased demand as consumers look to replace their smartphones.
While camera lenses on 5G smartphones vary little in terms of design and production compared with those on their 4G counterparts, Kuo said 5G smartphones would bring higher standards and more applications.
The company would benefit from a growing market for smartphones equipped with multiple camera lenses with higher resolutions and larger apertures, Kuo said, adding that Genius would consider expanding its production capacity next year.
“Our clients are increasingly demanding high-end lenses as they look to enhance smartphone features in a bid to attract consumers,” he said.
Questioned about the average selling price of high-end camera lenses, Kuo did not answer directly, but said that negotiations with manufacturers occur each quarter.
A shortage of mid to high-end lenses — due to the high level of technical difficulty in production — might support the average selling price to some extent.
Genius has order visibility stretching into the first quarter of next year, which is likely to be better than the first quarter of this year, he added.
However, the company did not provide a sales guidance for next year.
Genius posted net profit of NT$1.3 billion (US$42.6 million) for last quarter, or earnings per share of NT$12.90, up from NT$272.26 million in the same quarter last year, a company filing with the Taiwan Stock Exchange showed.
Consolidated revenue more than doubled from NT$2.38 billion to NT$5.06 billion, while gross margin improved by 11.52 percentage points to 49.27 percent thanks to increased production capacity and an adjusted portfolio.
Genius aims to maintain and eventually improve its gross margin next year, chairman Jones Chen (陳天慶) said, adding that the company would continue to rely on production of 10-megapixel lenses and above, which have a better gross margin than lenses below 10 megapixels.
In the first three quarters of the year, lenses of 10-megapixels and above contributed 47 percent of revenue, while those below 10-megapixels contributed 37 percent, company data showed.
The company also produces micro-lenses, under-screen camera lenses and lenses for time-of-flight cameras, which contributed the remaining 16 percent of revenue, Chen said, adding that they also improve gross margin.
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