Intel has posted record first quarter revenue and earnings per share, with sales driven by high demand for Pentium processors.
Intel's first quarter revenue was US$6.4 billion, up 39% from $4.6 billion for the first quarter of last year, while net income was almost $2 billion, up from $894 million for the comparable period a year ago.
Earnings per share in the first quarter, which ended March 29, rose to $2.20 from $1.02 in the first quarter of 1996, an increase of 116 percent, company officials said.
The quarterly results announced today compare with revenue of $6.4 billion, net income of $1.9 billion and earnings per share of $2.13 in the fourth quarter of 1996.
"1997 will be a year of major product transitions for Intel," Intel president and CEO Andrew Grove said in a statement. "In May, we plan to introduce the Pentium II processor. As we shift to these more powerful processors, our challenge, as always, will be to add manufacturing capacity fast enough to supply all market segments."
During the quarter, the company announced its regular quarterly cash dividend of 0.05 cents per share, payable on June 1 to stockholders, making it 19 consecutive quarters that Intel has paid a dividend.
Looking forward, Intel said it expects revenue for the second quarter of 1997 to be flat to slightly up from first quarter revenue of $6.4 billion.
Expenses, including research and development, in the second quarter of 1997 are expected to be approximately 7 percent to 9 percent higher than expenses of $1.3 billion in the first quarter, while R&D spending for 1997 is expected to be approximately $2.4 billion, the company said.
All geographical regions had revenue growth in the first quarter compared to the fourth quarter of 1996, with the exception of the Americas region. Asia-Pacific revenue nearly doubled from the first quarter of 1996, and the region is Intel's fastest growing area.
About 40 percent of the quarter's revenue was generated in the Americas, while 29% came from Europe, 20 percent in the Asia-Pacific region and 11 percent in Japan alone, Intel executives said.
Unit shipments of microprocessors in the first quarter were flat compared to shipments in the fourth quarter of 1996. Intel's chipset units shipped declined in the first quarter from a seasonal high in the fourth quarter of 1996.
Flash memory units shipped during the quarter set a record. Pricing pressure continued, however, resulting in sequentially slightly lower revenue, Intel said.
Employment at the end of the first quarter of 1997 was 52,000, up from 48,500 at the end of 1996.