Texas Instruments' Consumer Demand Dwindling, But Posts Strong Third Quarter

By Cindy Waxer October 26, 2010

Texas Instruments may have beat Wall Street expectations with its third-quarter revenue results but the semiconductor giant is warning that its fourth-quarter revenue will be hurt by dampening demand for chips for computers and televisions.

TI reported a third-quarter profit of $859 million, or 71 cents a share, compared with a profit of $538 million, or 42 cents a share, for the year-earlier period. Revenue was $3.7 billion, up from $2.9 billion. Analysts had anticipated reported earnings of 69 cents a share, on revenue of $3.7 billion, according to a consensus survey by FactSet Research. For the current quarter, TI said it expects earnings of 59 cents a share to 67 cents a share, and revenue of $3.36 billion to $3.64 billion.

“Our strong performance was driven by growth in all of our segments,” said Rich Templeton, TI chairman, president and chief executive officer. “TI’s continuing transformation to a company focused on Analog and Embedded Processing delivered new highs for both gross and operating margins. Strong earnings per share demonstrate the combined impact of solid profits and our diligence to return excess capital to our shareholders through stock repurchases.

However, Templeton added, “As we move into the fourth quarter, we expect sequentially lower revenue reflecting a combination of seasonal patterns, continued soft demand in computing and consumer markets, and slowing growth in the industrial market.”

Lately, TI has been gobbling up chip-making factories, including its first one in China. In February 2009, the company acquired Bethlehem, Penn.-based CICLON Semiconductor Device Corporation, a designer of high-frequency, high-efficiency power management semiconductors.

In August, TI acquired two wafer fabs and equipment in Aizu-Wakamatsu, Japan, increasing the company’s production capacity. And earlier this month, the company expanded into China with the acquisition of a wafer fabrication facility in China. The factory is located in southwestern China’s Chengdu high-tech zone, “considered by many to be China’s next major technology hub,” Texas Instruments said in a statement.

“This fab in Chengdu will strengthen our ability to support customers’ growing requirements and deliver analog products when and where customers need them,” said Gregg Lowe, senior vice president at TI’s Analog division.

Edited by Erin Harrison

TechZone360 Contributing Editor

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