Actions Semiconductor Reports First Quarter 2015 Results

(PRNewswire) — Actions Semiconductor Co., Ltd. (Nasdaq: ACTS) ("Actions Semiconductor" or "the Company"), one of China's leading fabless semiconductor companies that provides comprehensive portable multimedia and mobile internet system-on-a-chip (SoC) solutions for portable consumer electronics, today reported its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2015.

First Quarter 2015 Results

All financial results are reported on a U.S. GAAP basis.

Revenue for the first quarter of 2015 was $10.5 million, as compared to revenue of $13.9 million for the fourth quarter of 2014, and $11.3 million for the first quarter of 2014. 

Actions Semiconductor reported gross profit in the first quarter of $2.5 million, as compared with negative $2.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $2.6 million in the first quarter of 2014.  Gross profit for the first quarter of 2015 benefited from sales of certain lower-margin, slower moving inventories which were written-down in the second half of 2014. Gross margin was 23.5% for the first quarter of 2015, compared to gross margin of negative 19.2% for the fourth quarter of 2014, and 23.1% for the first quarter of 2014.  Gross margin continued to be impacted by fierce competition in the tablet market. 

Operating expenses in the first quarter of 2015 were $9.5 million, as compared to $10.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $9.2 million in the first quarter of 2014. Research and development expenses were $6.8 million for the first quarter, as compared to $7.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $6.8 million in the first quarter of 2014. General and administrative expenses were $2.0 million in the first quarter, as compared to $2.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $2.0 million in the first quarter of 2014.  Selling and marketing expenses were $0.6 million for the first quarter, as compared to $0.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $0.4 million in the first quarter of 2014. Impairment on intangible assets was nil in the first quarter, as compared to $0.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and nil in the first quarter of 2014.

Operating loss for the first quarter of 2015 was $7.0 million, as compared to the operating loss of $13.3 million in fourth quarter of 2014 and the operating loss of $6.1 million in the first quarter of 2014.

Interest income for the first quarter of 2015 was $1.6 million, down from $1.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 and $3.1 million in the first quarter of 2014. The year-over-year decrease was due to lower cash and interest bearing securities following the Dutch auction tender offer in September 2014.

Net loss attributable to Actions Semiconductor's shareholders for the first quarter of 2015 was $5.0 million or $0.085 per basic and diluted American Depositary Share ("ADS"). This compares to net loss attributable to Actions Semiconductor's shareholders of $12.2 million or $0.206 per basic and diluted ADS, for the fourth quarter of 2014, and net loss attributable to Actions Semiconductor's shareholders of $5.5 million or $0.080 per basic and diluted ADS, for the first quarter of 2014. 

"Revenue in the first quarter came in at the mid-range of our expectations. Overall demand was slow, primarily due to the Chinese New Year holiday, which causes a slowdown in production by consumer electronics manufacturers in China, and softer demand for tablets, which currently account for the largest proportion of our application processor shipments, as the worldwide tablet market experienced a year-over-year decline in shipments for the second consecutive quarter.  Our multimedia business exceeded expectations, thanks to strong demand for our Bluetooth 4.0 solutions for speakers and boomboxes and an abatement in the supply shortage from our wafer foundry," stated Dr. Zhenyu Zhou, CEO of Actions Semiconductor.   

"We entered 2015 armed with a portfolio of leading edge new products that address a wide range of new and profitable markets.  We expect our new single chip Bluetooth 4.0 solution for boomboxes, speakers, headphones and related products to be the driving force in our multimedia business. We have two new chipsets based on 28nm process technology targeting branded tablets, OTT set-top boxes and other cloud connected devices.  We began shipping our 28nm based 32-bit quad-core solution to the tablet and OTT set-top box markets in the first quarter and expect a significant volume increase in the second quarter and beyond. Our high performance 64-bit SoC is attracting strong customer interest and design wins and is expected to make meaningful contributions to revenue and gross profit in the second half of 2015. We are also supporting the open source intelligent hardware community for Android and Linux with the launch of 32-bit and 64-bit open-source SoCs S500 and S900 and reference design platforms, which we believe will drive development of differentiated new products for various cloud connected devices. We believe these new products will support revenue growth of 20% to 25% and good margin improvement in 2015," Dr. Zhou concluded.

Financial Condition

The Company ended the first quarter of 2015 with $162.4 million in cash and cash equivalents, together with time deposits, trading securities and marketable securities. Total current assets were approximately $188.5 million, and the Company had working capital of approximately $127.2 million and $45.0 million in short-term bank loans as of March 31, 2015. 

Since the share repurchase program commenced in 2007, the Company has invested approximately $80.0 million in repurchasing its ADSs and ordinary shares, including $25.0 million representing the equivalent of 10.0 million ADSs repurchased through a Dutch auction tender offer in September 2014. As of March 31, 2015, the equivalent of approximately 34.3 million ADSs were repurchased. As of March 31, 2015, total number of outstanding ordinary shares (including ordinary shares represented by ADSs) was 351,667,139.

Business Outlook

The following statements are based upon management's current expectations. These statements are forward-looking, and actual results may differ materially. The Company undertakes no obligation to update these statements.

Based on current market trends, the Company expects revenue in the second quarter of 2015 to be in the range of $13.0 to $14.0 million. The Company expects shipments of its newly launched products to ramp quickly in the upcoming quarter and accelerate in the second half of 2015.  

Conference Call Details

Actions Semiconductor's management will conduct an earnings conference call offering prepared remarks on the first quarter of fiscal year 2015, new products, business outlook and other matters.  While the Company continues to welcome written questions and comments from its shareholders, the management will not be conducting a question and answer session during the call.

The teleconference and webcast is scheduled to begin at 8:00 a.m. Eastern Time, on Tuesday, May 12, 2015. To participate in the live call, analysts and investors should dial 1-888-468-2440 (within U.S.) or 1-719-325-2494 (outside U.S.) at least ten minutes prior to the call. The conference ID number is 7788731. Actions Semiconductor will also offer a live and archived webcast of the conference call, accessible from the "Investor Relations" section of the Company's website at www.actions-semi.com . An audio replay of the call will be available to investors through May 23, 2015 by dialing 1-888-203-1112 (within U.S.) or 1-719-457-0820 (outside U.S.) and entering access code 7788731.

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