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Electronics news digest
18 August 2010, News, Electronic News Digest

Africa

In announcing its financial results for the year ended 30 April 2010, Ellies Holdings announced that it has paid its first ever dividend to shareholders, in the amount of 5 cents per share. The group’s revenue for the financial year was R1,16 billion, 18% up from R976,8 million in 2009, while headline earnings rose 8% from R65,2 million to R70,3 million, after dropping by 10,1% in the first half of the year. However, headline earnings per share of 25,96 cents actually dropped by 1,7% as a result of the issuance of 24,3 million shares during the year.

PHD Power recently moved into new premises at 3 Sharland Street in Driehoek, Germiston (GPS coordinates S26°12’52,29”, E28°08’53,81”) on Gauteng’s East Rand. The company’s new telephone number is +27 (0)11 872 2266/7, facsimile +27 (0)11 872 2484. A map can be found at www.phdpower.co.za/images/phd.jpg.

BittWare has signed an agreement making RedLinX, a multifaceted specialist engineering technology company, the exclusive international distributor in South Africa and the African Sub-Sahara territory. BittWare sees SA as a hot market for embedded signal processing COTS solutions and cites RedLinX’s experience and reputation in serving the defence/aerospace, mining, industrial and telecommunications markets in this region as a major reason for the agreement.

ECS has changed its telephone number to +27 (0)12 345 6132 and its fax number to +27 (0)12 345 6134.

RS Components has announced a new commercial agreement with APEM, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of switch and switch panels. RS currently stocks over 2100 APEM products, and the range will be further increased this year, as over 890 new APEM lines are added into the RS product portfolio. Supporting the new relationship, APEM microsites have also been launched across all RS websites, which can be accessed through the main RS website, and contain links to the full APEM switch product ranges held in stock by RS, along with application notes and supporting technical information to help engineers and buyers in the evaluation of APEM components. The sites can be accessed from the Electronics Centre link at www.rsonline.co.za/electronics.

The IEC recently welcomed Morocco as its 81st member, joining a growing community of 162 countries involved in electrotechnical standardisation. Morocco is a major player in African economic affairs and the fifth largest African economy by GDP – close to $91 billion in 2009. Over the past five years, the country enjoyed a steady growth of about 5% per annum. In addition to the automotive, IT and telecom industry sectors, which are in constant development, the Moroccan electrical and electronics industry is expanding rapidly. The key focus here is on the production of wiring and cables, electronic components, electrical distribution equipment, electrical batteries and storage systems, electric devices and lamps, and electric transformers and generators. Morocco follows in the steps of several African countries (Algeria, Egypt, Kenya, Libya, Nigeria, South Africa and Tunisia) that have become full or associate members of the IEC.

Business

Texas Instruments announced second-quarter 2010 revenue of $3,50 billion, net income of $769 million and earnings per share of 62 cents. These figures compare to first-quarter 2010 revenue of $3,21 billion, net income of $658 million and earnings per share of 52 cents, and second-quarter 2009 revenue of $2,46 billion, net income of $260 million and earnings per share of 20 cents.

austriamicrosystems reported strong revenue and earnings growth for the second quarter and first half of 2010. Second quarter group revenues were 51,7 million Euros, up 83% from 28,3 million Euros in the same quarter of 2009 and 18% up compared to the first quarter of this year. Group revenues for the first half of 2010 were 95,7 million Euros, up 78% from 53,8 Euros million recorded in the first half of 2009. Net income for the second quarter of 2010 was 3,6 million Euros, compared to a loss of 10,7 million Euros in the same period last year. Basic and diluted earnings per share for the second quarter were 0,36 Euros, compared to a loss per share of 1,00 Euros for the second quarter of 2009.

RF Micro Devices reported financial results for its fiscal 2011 first quarter ended 3 July 2010. The company’s quarterly revenue increased 29% year-over-year and 5% sequentially to $273,8 million. On a GAAP basis, gross margin equalled 37,4%, quarterly operating income totalled $40,6 million and quarterly net income was $28,1 million, or $0,10 per diluted share.

Leading electronics manufacturing services (EMS) provider Foxconn Technology Group is set to take more than half of global EMS industry revenue by 2011, up from 44,2% in 2009, according to iSuppli. This growth is largely thanks to the continued success of Apple, Foxconn’s fastest growing customer. EMS providers are defined as companies whose primary business is the contract manufacturing of electronic products on behalf of original equipment manufacturers or OEMs. With revenue of $17,1 billion, Taiwan’s Foxconn, aka Hon Hai Precision Industries, was the dominant EMS provider in the first quarter of 2010, dwarfing No. 2 player Flextronics International, which posted revenue of $5,9 billion during the same period. Foxconn’s revenue in the first quarter surged 54,1% from $11,1 billion during the same period in 2009.

National Instruments reported quarterly revenue for Q2 2010 of $212 million, representing a 39% year-over-year increase and an 11% sequential increase. For the first half of 2010, the company reported a 30% increase in revenue. Net income for Q2 2010 was $24,6 million, with GAAP fully diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0,31.

For the three months ended 30 June 2010, Renesas Electronics recorded net sales of 292 billion Yen, up from 102,3 billion Yen in the same period last year. Despite this sharp year-on-year increase in sales, the company still failed to post a profit, rather declaring a net loss of 33,1 million Yen (79,27 Yen per share) for the quarter, compared to a net loss of 21,7 million Yen (175.70 Yen per share) in 2009’s equivalent quarter.

Actel announced net revenues of $57,8 million for the second quarter of 2010, up 27,7% from the second quarter of 2009 and up 10,5% from the first quarter of 2010. The company reported net income in accordance with US generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) of $4,8 million, or $0,18 per diluted share, for the second quarter of 2010 compared with a net loss of $45,1 million, or $1,73 per basic and diluted share, for the second quarter of 2009 and a net income of $2,9 million, or $0,11 per diluted share, for the first quarter of 2010.

ARM Holdings reported second-quarter 2010 revenue of £100 million, up an impressive 54% from £64,8 million in the same period last year. Earnings per share for the latest quarter were 2,34 pence, 146% more than a year ago. The company has experienced significant growth in mobile applications as smartphone growth continues and ARM technology-based mobile computers begin to come to market. ARM claims that there is an average of 2,6 ARM-processor based chips per mobile phone.

Touting ‘significant improvements’ in its components business as a major boon, Samsung Electronics announced revenues of 37,89 trillion Korean won on a consolidated basis for the second quarter ended 30 June 2010, a 17% increase year-on-year. For the quarter, the company posted net income of 4,28 trillion won. Consolidated operating profit for the quarter was a record 5,01 trillion won, an 88% increase year-on-year. The company’s semiconductor business unit recorded an operating profit of 2,94 trillion won on sales of 9,53 trillion won, while the LCD business generated an operating profit of 880 billion won on 7,76 trillion won in sales.

TSMC announced consolidated revenue of NT$104,96 billion, net income of NT$40,28 billion, and diluted earnings per share of NT$1,55 for its second quarter ended 30 June 2010. Year-over-year, second quarter revenue increased 41,4% while net income increased 64,8% and diluted EPS increased 65%. Compared to first quarter of 2010, second quarter results represent a 13,9% increase in revenue, and a 19,7% increase in both net income and diluted EPS.

Companies

Mentor Graphics has filed an import suspension application against EVE emulation products in Japan with the Japanese Customs Office. The filing requests that Japanese Customs issue a ruling that EVE emulation products infringe Mentor Graphics’ intellectual property. The application also requests that, upon making such a determination, the Japanese Customs Office bar importation of EVE products into Japan.

NXP Semiconductors recently announced its acquisition of Jennic, a developer of low-power RF solutions for wireless applications in smart energy, environment, logistics and consumer markets. The acquisition will see Jennic’s portfolio of 802.15.4 and Zigbee RF solutions integrated across a wide range of NXP’s mixed-signal products. NXP paid approximately $12,2 million to acquire 100% ownership of Jennic shares, plus up to $7,8 million in additional consideration over the next two years if Jennic meets certain performance targets. Approximately 50 UK-based employees will transfer to NXP.

ARM and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company jointly announced a long-term agreement that provides TSMC with access to a broad range of ARM processors and enables the development of ARM physical IP across TSMC technology nodes. This agreement supports the companies’ mutual customers to achieve optimised systems-on-chip (SoC) based on ARM processors and covers a wide range of process nodes extending down to 20 nm. The agreement provides TSMC access to optimise the implementation of ARM processors on TSMC process technologies, including ARM Cortex processor family and CoreLink interconnect fabric for AMBA protocols. It also establishes a long-term relationship with ARM for the development of physical IP, including memory products and standard cell libraries targeting the most advanced TSMC 28 nm and 20 nm processes.

Infineon Technologies reported results for the third quarter of the 2010 fiscal year, ended 30 June. Compared to the second quarter, the company’s third quarter revenues grew strongly by 17% to 1,2 billion Euros. Net income rose 59% sequentially, to 126 million Euros from 79 million Euros in the prior quarter.

Industry

MoSys, a provider of high-density memory and high-speed interface (I/O) intellectual property (IP), has spearheaded the launch of the GigaChip Alliance, an ecosystem of semiconductor device suppliers in support of the GigaChip interface. The founding alliance participants are MoSys, Altera and NetLogic Microsystems. The GigaChip interface is a board-level, open, CEI-11 compatible interface developed to enable highly efficient serial chip-to-chip communications in next-generation networking, computing and storage systems. Through the GigaChip Alliance, participating companies will collaborate on expanding the interface and developing industry-wide open interoperability standards and tools to accelerate its adoption.

The Wireless Power Consortium has announced that the Qi low-power standard’s specification has been completed, and will soon become available for free download. According to a blog entry on the group’s website, the standard delivers up to 5 Watts to wireless power receivers. The specification’s working group has developed a test specification and official certification services have reportedly already been instituted.


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