Chip tester AEM posts 47% jump in second-half profit

Chairman Loke Wai San from AEM Holdings. Looking ahead, AEM said it expects demand for its products and solutions to remain strong. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) -AEM Holdings, which provides advanced chip testing solutions, saw second-half earnings surge 47 per cent year on year on higher revenue.

The company on Thursday (Feb 24) reported a net profit of $62.4 million for the six months to Dec 31 last year, from $42.3 million in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose 52 per cent year on year to $373.2 million, with the group's test cell solutions business segment contributing to the bulk of sales.

The significant improvement in topline performance was attributed to a volume ramp-up in AEM's new generation system level testing handlers, burn-in test handlers and peripheral tools - as well as the consolidation of contract manufacturer CEI, which the group had acquired in the first half of last year.

Earnings per share grew 35 per cent, to 20.78 cents, from 15.36 cents a year earlier.

The latest set of results brings AEM's profit for the full year to $92.1 million, down 6 per cent from its financial year 2020 profit of $97.6 million, mainly due to increased research and development expenses as well as higher income tax provision.

A final dividend of five cents per share has been proposed, bringing the total dividend per share for the fiscal year to 7.6 cents, down from nine cents the year before.

Looking ahead, AEM said it expects demand for its products and solutions to remain strong, and for the adoption of its new platforms to continue in financial year 2022 and into financial year 2023.

Shares of the group ended Thursday 17 cents, or 4.1 per cent, lower at $4.03, before the results were released.

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