AU Optronics Corp. ("AUO" or the "Company") (TAIEX: 2409; NYSE: AUO) today held its investors conference and announced its unaudited earnings results for the third quarter of 2012(1).
Consolidated revenue in the third quarter of 2012 was NT$102,781 million (US$3,509 million) (2), up 8% from the previous quarter. Gross profit was -NT$1,862 million (-US$64 million), with the gross margin of -1.8%. Operating loss was NT$9,147 million (US$312 million), with the operating margin of -8.9%. AUO's net loss for the third quarter of 2012 was NT$16,479 million (US$563 million). Net loss attributable to equity holders of the parent company was NT$16,275 million (US$556 million), or a basic EPS of -NT$1.84 (-US$0.63 per ADR).
3Q2012 Result Highlights
AUO's unaudited consolidated results for the third quarter of 2012 were highlighted as below:
- Revenue was NT$102,781 million, up 8% quarter-over-quarter
- Net loss was NT$16,479 million
- Basic EPS was -NT$1.84
- Gross margin was -1.8%
- Operating margin was -8.9%
- EBITDA (3) margin was 9.3%
In the third quarter of 2012, shipments for AUO's large-sized panel shipments reached around 33.2 million units, up by 4.6% quarter-over-quarter. Shipments for small and medium-sized panels were around 42.2 million units, up 11.1% quarter-over-quarter.
Looking back to the third quarter, thanks to a gradual improvement in panel supply and demand, the average selling price of TV panels sequentially recovered. The Company's capacity utilization rates also steadily increased, while its days of inventory decreased substantially. Nevertheless, the improvement of the Company's profitability was slower than expected due to a couple of reasons:
- With an eye on the long-term competitiveness, the Company continues to cultivate new technologies and currently has achieved initial success in development cooperation with its customers on a couple of new products. However, in the third quarter, the Company's new technology platforms and new products, especially for small and medium-sized products, were still in production ramp up period. Therefore, the contribution from these new products to the Company's profitability was softer than expectation.
- Our solar business is still facing an industry downturn. Going forward, the Company will proactively adjust its operation scale and cut operating costs as well as expenses, aiming to effectively reduce the operating losses in the solar business.
Looking forward, as the TV panel market is expected to recover gradually, the Company will continue to focus on technology upgrading and manufacturing process enhancement. It will also continue to strengthen the customer and product portfolios of small and medium-sized panels, hoping to promptly improve its production efficiency and operational performance.
(1) All financial information was unaudited and was prepared by the Company in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in Taiwan (“ROC GAAP”).
(2) Amounts converted by an exchange rate of NTD29.29:USD1 based on Federal Reserve Bank of New York, USA as of September 30, 2012.
(3) EBITDA=Operating Income +D&A, that is, operating income before depreciation and amortization.