Apr 16, 2014 / 5:00 CET/CEST
Bad Ragaz/Switzerland, April 16, 2014.
Weaker semiconductor business in certain Asian markets overshadows start into 2014
INFICON Holding AG (SIX Swiss Exchange: IFCN) reports year-over-year 1.4% lower sales of USD 71.6 million for the first three months of 2014. Adjusted for the positive effects from acquisitions (1 percentage point) and foreign exchange (0.4 percentage points), sales declined organically by 2.8%. Compared with the extremely strong fourth quarter of 2013, sales declined 11.1%, largely due to lower sales to the Specific Vacuum Industries market: After the fast-paced fourth quarter of 2013, the demand from certain Asian chip manufacturers slowed down significantly. The vacuum coating market developed stably. The sales volume achieved with customers of the Specific Vacuum Industries' sector declined by 14.3% compared with the respective period of last year and by 27.5% compared with the extremely strong preceding closing quarter of 2013. Sales generated with customers in the Refrigeration & Air Conditioning (including the automotive market) market developed steadily in all global areas. Compared with the same period of last year, INFICON achieved 8.1% higher sales of USD 12.0 million. Demand for portable devices to analyze toxic organic substances (HAPSITE) remained strong: the sales generated in the Emergency Response & Security market increased year-over-year by a remarkable 60% to USD 8.8 million which was, however, somewhat short of the record mark set in the last quarter of 2014. In the first quarter of 2014, sales to the broadly based General Vacuum Processes market increased by 5% to USD 29.2 million sequentially and contributed with 40.8%, again the biggest portion to the total Group sales. In the preceding quarter, the sales recorded in the Specific Vacuum Process Industries market had for the first time contributed the lion's share to Group sales. Year-over-year, sales generated with customers of the General Vacuum Processes market diminished by 5.5%.
Ongoing robust gross margin and strong balance sheet
Due to the lower sales volume and a reduced gross margin of 49.5%, INFICON reports a gross profit for the reporting quarter of USD 35.5 million after USD 36.8 million a year ago. After reduced costs as compared with the preceding quarter, the income from operations stood at USD 9.9 million, yielding a margin of 13.8% of sales. Net income for the first quarter of 2014 declined from USD 8.7 million a year ago to now USD 7.3 million. Fully diluted, this equals 17% lower earnings per share of USD 31.3 after USD 3.79 recorded for the first quarter 2013 and USD 5.37 recorded for the last quarter of 2013.
The operating cash flow increased from USD 7.1 million recorded in the fourth quarter of 2013 to now USD 7.9 million despite seasonally higher cash needs. Compared with the respective prior-year figure of USD 3.4 million, the cash flow generated in the reporting quarter more than doubled. While the working capital was reduced by USD 3.3 million, it increased slightly to 22.7% of sales. The debt-free balance sheet shows cash and short-term cash equivalents of USD 82.2 million after USD 75.0 million at the end of last year, again largely driven by the strong cash flow from operations. The increased equity ratio of 85.1% highlights the strength of INFICON's balance sheet.
Distribution to shareholders and unchanged outlook
As previously announced, the Board of Directors proposes to the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders on April 29, 2014 to distribute CHF 14.00 per share for fiscal 2013 out of legal reserves from capital contributions. The full agenda for the AGM was published on April 8, 2014 and can also be downloaded at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=124424&p=proxy.
With a view to the order books, a series of successful product specifications at customers for new tools, and a mid-term reasonably favorable industry outlook, INFICON assesses the coming months with confidence despite a higher level of uncertainty in the semiconductor business. INFICON continues to expect for fiscal year 2014 sales of USD 290 million to USD 320 million and an operating income of USD 44 million to USD 56 million.
Conference Call and webcast today at 09:30 CEST
INFICON's group management will provide a detailed presentation of the first quarter results today at 09:30 a.m. CEST. Participants can dial in at:
Europe: +41 (0) 58 310 5000
UK: +44 (0) 203 059 5862
USA +1 (1) 631 570 5613
USA (Toll free): +1 (1) 866 291 4166
All participants should dial in at least 10 minutes prior to the call. There is no PIN required to ac-cess the call. A live webcast of the conference call and the presentation visuals are available in the Investor section of the INFICON website at www.inficon.com where the webcast will later also be archived.
To automatically receive notification via e-mail of the latest financial information from INFICON, sign up for e-mail alerts in the Investors section of the INFICON website.
Chief Financial Officer
+423 388 3510
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