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Prospects dim for semiconductor IP sector

Posted: 06 Aug 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:semiconductor IP? IP vendors? revenue?

The semiconductor IP sector is turning out to be non-profit business. Most IP vendors are losing money in the arena. Several had posted losses for the quarter, including Aware, MoSys and Virage.

Last week, Mosaid Technologies Inc. concluded the sale of certain assets of its IP product development business to Synopsys Inc. for $15.3 million in cash.

A few others have kept their heads above water, such as ARM, Rambus and one other vendor. For example, MIPS Technologies Inc. said revenue for Q4 was $23.7 million, an increase of 24 percent over the Q3 revenue of $19.1 million, and an increase of 30 percent from revenue of $18.2 million reported in Q4 a year ago. Net income in Q4 of fiscal 2007 on a generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) basis was $2.3 million, compared to net income of $1.2 million in Q3 and $7.5 million in Q4 of fiscal 2006. GAAP net income per share on a diluted basis in Q4 of 2007 was $0.05, compared with GAAP net income per share of $0.03 in Q3 and $0.17 in Q4 2006.

"MIPS fourth fiscal quarter was outstanding in several respects," said John Bourgoin, president and CEO, in a statement. "Record license revenues helped us close a fiscal year in which we enjoyed 30 percent growth over the prior year.''

Losses
The picture was not so bright for others. Aware Inc., a supplier of broadband and biometrics IP, said revenues for Q2 2007 were $6.4 million, an increase of 34 percent compared to $4.8 million in the same quarter last year.

GAAP net loss for Q2 2007 was $1 million, or minus $0.04 per share, which included $0.3 million of stock-based compensation charges in accordance with the provisions of FAS 123.

This compared to a GAAP net loss of $1.2 million, or minus $0.05 per share, for the same period a year ago. GAAP net loss for the six months ended June 30, 2007 was $1.1 million, or $0.04 per share, compared to a net loss of $0.7 million, or minus $0.03 per share, for the same period a year ago.

Another IP vendor, MoSys Inc., said revenue for the second quarter of 2007 was $4.3 million, representing a 38 percent increase compared to $3.1 million in Q1 2007. Q2 total revenue increased 85 percent as compared to $2.3 million for Q2 2006.

On a GAAP basis, MoSys' net loss for the quarter was $146,000, or breakeven per share. This compares to a net loss of $969,000, or minus $0.03 per share, in the previous quarter and a net loss of $2.1 million, or minus $0.07 per share, in Q2 2006.

More losses
Meanwhile, Virage Logic Corp. said revenue for Q3 fiscal 2007 was $11.3 million, compared with $15.3 million for the comparable quarter of fiscal 2006 and $10.6 million in the prior quarter.

As reported under U.S. GAAP, net loss for Q3 of fiscal 2007 was $1.2 million, or minus $0.05 per share, compared with a net loss of $1.6 million, or minus $0.07 per share, for the same period a year ago and with a net loss of $1.8 million, or minus $0.08 per share, for Q2 of fiscal 2007.

During the quarter the company incurred $0.6 million of restructuring charges in connection with consolidation of some of our operations, including the closing of its Seattle R&D site.

Dan McCranie, president and CEO of Virage Logic, painted a mixed picture. "While we were able to grow revenue 7 percent sequentially to $11.3 million, we did not meet our minimum revenue guidance of $11.5 million,'' he said in a statement.

For the current quarter, the company anticipates total revenues to increase to approximately $12 million to $13 million in Q4 of fiscal 2007. The company expects to report a GAAP net loss of approximately $0.01 to $0.04 per share.

- Mark LaPedus
EE Times




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