Advanced Energy Announces First Quarter 2010 Results Fueled by Strong Semiconductor Growth

April 22, 2010 by Jeff Shepard

Advanced Energy Industries, Inc. announced financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2010. Sales for the first quarter of 2010 increased 22.7% to $81.6 million from $66.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2009, and increased 150.0% from $32.6 million in the first quarter of 2009.

Sales were robust in the first quarter driven by strong growth in the semiconductor market. Semiconductor sales rose 47.7% sequentially to $48.6 million, representing 59.6% of total sales for the quarter. Sales to the non-semiconductor markets increased 3.9% sequentially to $21.5 million, representing 26.3% of total sales for the quarter. Service revenue was flat sequentially at $11.5 million, representing 14.1% of total sales for the quarter.

Bookings for the first quarter were $96.7 million compared to $98.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2009, resulting in a book to bill ratio of 1.19:1 for the first quarter. Ending backlog increased 22.8% sequentially to $81.3 million at the end of the first quarter compared to $66.2 million at the end of the fourth quarter of 2009.

Gross margin improved significantly to 40.6% in the first quarter, up from 36.8% in the fourth quarter of 2009, as a result of greater efficiencies and improved operating leverage due to higher revenues. This compares to 19.6% in the same period last year.

Operating expenses rose 11.0% sequentially to $25.0 million as we eliminated our temporary cost reductions related to pay cuts and shutdowns. In addition, expenses associated with the pending acquisition of PV Powered were $325,000 ($0.01 per share).

First quarter net income was $6.2 million or $0.15 per diluted share, compared to net income of $1.5 million or $0.04 per diluted share in the fourth quarter of 2009. In the same period a year ago, net loss was $79.8 million or a loss of $1.90 per share due primarily to a non-cash goodwill impairment charge of $63.3 million or $1.51 per share. Cash, cash equivalents and investments were $163.4 million at the end of the first quarter, a decrease of $14.1 million from the fourth quarter due to increases in accounts receivable and inventory to support the growth in revenues.

"Marked by the third consecutive quarter of greater than 20% total revenue growth, we were extremely pleased with our first quarter results. Momentum in the semiconductor capital equipment market drove the majority of the growth this quarter continuing the three-quarter trend of over 40% expansion in that market," said Dr. Hans Betz, Chief Executive Officer. "Advanced Energy once again distinguished itself as one of the premier suppliers as we successfully managed through supply chain constraints in order to meet aggressive customer demand."

"In keeping with our strategy to increase Advanced Energy’s presence in the renewable energy market, we announced a definitive agreement to acquire PV Powered, a leading manufacturer of grid-tied PV inverters serving the commercial and residential markets. The combined company will offer a complete suite of products, propelling Advanced Energy forward as a leader in the North American solar inverter market."