Applied Materials puts up over US$2 billion in sales during Q3 2011

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Applied Materials (AMAT) posted a solid financial outcome upon the release of its third quarter 2011 results. Although the company noted that its overall Q3 orders and net sales were down 25% and 3%, respectively, compared to Q2 2011, AMAT still completed the quarter with US$2.39 billion in generated orders and saw its net sales reach the upper end of its previous guidance at US$2.79 billion. Non-GAAP operating income was US$683 million, with a non-GAAP net income of US$467 million, or US$0.35 per share.

“Applied delivered solid third quarter results, with earnings and revenue at the upper end of our expectations,” said Mike Splinter, chairman and chief executive officer. “While the fundamental drivers of our markets remain strong, we are seeing softness in our business resulting from the uncertain economic environment and overcapacity in solar.”

The company’s Applied Global Services (AGS) division saw its orders confirmed at US$613 million, a 2% increase over Q2 2011’s US$603 million. However, the division’s net sales did take a slight 2% hit quarter-over-quarter, coming in at US$603 million. Applied advised that the results were “in-line with [its] expectations.”

In the Energy and Environmantal Solutions (EES) unit, orders were totaled at US$318 million, a 48% quarter-over-quarter fall from Q2’s US$612 million. AMAT noted that the continued drop in EES orders could be traced to its “customers digesting capacity additions.” Net sales for the unit also dipped to US$535 million from the company’s Q2 record of US$637 million, but once again Applied advised that the net sales’ results were better than it had expected. Gross margin for Q3 2011 was 42.5%, growing 1% from Q2 2011’s 41.5%.

“Our cumulative net sales and non-GAAP earnings per share over the past four quarters have been the strongest in the company's history,” said George Davis, chief financial officer. “In our most recent quarter, Applied generated nearly $600 million in operating cash flow and issued $1.75 billion in long-term debt to support the Varian acquisition.”

Applied did note that it had generated US$2.39 billion in new orders over the third quarter. China led the new orders segment accounting for 22% of the market with Taiwan taking 18%. North America, Korea and Japan each made up 15% of the new orders for Q3.

In its guidance for Q4 2011, AMAT stated that it expects its nets sales to be down 15% to 30%, compared to results from Q3 2011. Additionally, it anticipates non-GAAP EPS to reach between US$0.16 to US$0.24.

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