San Jose, Calif.--Jan. 21, 1998--Altera Corp. reported that fourth quartersales of $157.1 million were up 24 percent over the same period last yearand down 3 percent from the previous quarter. Total year 1997 sales werea record $631.1 million, an increase of 27 percent from 1996.
Gross margin as a percentage of sales for the fourth quarter was 62.5 percent, up 1.0 percentage points over the same period last year and flat compared to the prior quarter. Wafer price reductions, improvedyields, and technology advancements have offset price reductions through the year.
Net income for the fourth quarter was $36.7 million, up 25 percent over the fourth quarter of 1996 and down 6 percent from the previous quarter. Fourth quarter earnings per share, on a diluted basis, were $0.38, anincrease of $0.07 from the same period last year and down $0.02 from the prior quarter. Diluted 1997 earnings per share, excluding one- time charges, were a record $1.55, an increase of 34 percent from 1996.
Quarterly cash activity included a payment of $56.2 million for Wafertech, a joint venture with TSMC and other partners to manufacture wafers in a state-of-the-art facility in Camas, Wash., and $9.5 million for routine capital expenditures.
As previously announced, the company changed its revenue recognition policy effective January 1, 1997. As a result, the company has recorded an $18.1 million charge in the first quarter forthe cumulative effect of the change in accounting policy. Also, as a result of the change, revenues and net income (before the one-time charge) for the first half of 1997 have increased $5.3 million and $2.3 million respectively.
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