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Thursday, April 18, 2002
 Optical drives rise to 60% of AOpen’s sales, drive 1Q revenues to NT$4.7 billion
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Message Text: AOpen, bolstered by strong optical drive sales, reported first-quarter revenues of NT$4.775 billion and estimated pre-tax profits at NT$1.8 to NT$2.0 per share. Accordingly, the component manufacturer can be expected to post a full-year, pre-tax EPS of about NT$8.

The estimated first-quarter revenues signal a 16% jump from a year earlier and a 4% increase quarter-on-quarter. For the year, AOpen said its revenues would rise 20-25% from 2001.

Sales of CD-ROM, CD-R and DVD-ROM drives delivered a robust fourth quarter, and demand is still growing. Revenues in March hit a record NT$1.71 billion, of which optical drive sales accounted for 60%. Gross margin also improved, as the company shipped a large volume of profitable items like 32X and 30X CD-R drives and moved to use cheaper chipsets from VIA Technologies in its CD-ROM drives.

Besides the high-growth optical storage lines, AOpen supplies cases, motherboards, monitors, add-on cards, servers and barebone systems. With its Zhongshan, Guangdong Province production lines expanded to a maximum monthly capacity of one million units, AOpen expects to increase its monthly shipments of optical storage products to 800,000 to 900,000 units this quarter and one million units in the third quarter.

The company said it is also betting on new slim-type optical drives scheduled to be released this month and build-to-order (BTO) notebooks that it will start producing to customer specifications later this year.

AOpen, an Acer Group subsidiary trading on the OTC (over-the-counter) market, expects to list its shares on the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TSE) in the third quarter.
 
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