By DASHVEENJIT KAUR / Pic By HUSSEIN SHAHARUDDIN
Aemulus Holdings Bhd expects to post a profit this year based on the strong business outlook for the rest of the current financial year.
The Penang-based test equipment manufacturer said the growing global semiconductor market and improved global economic outlook will drive its growth.
“We are positive and optimistic. Our latest quarterly results reflect positively on our operations returning to profitability this year,” CEO and ED Ng Sang Beng told The Malaysian Reserve.
For the first-quarter of financial year ended Sept 30, 2017 (1QFY17), Aemulus reported a net profit of RM629,000 compared to a net loss of RM1.9 million in the previous corresponding period, on the back of an increased revenue of RM5.6 million versus RM2.7 million a year ago.
The ACE Market-listed Aemulus reported a net loss of RM2.74 million for FY16, slightly more than a year after listing on Sept 15, 2015.
Based on its latest 3Q ended June 30 results, Aemulus registered a fivefold increase in net profit to RM2.5 million as revenue doubled to RM12 million from RM5.5 million in the previous corresponding quarter, driven by growing demand from the enterprise storage, smartphone and tablet (S&T) segments.
Aemulus produces AMB7600, a radio-frequency (RF) tester for integrated chips in the S&T segment, and mix-signal tester AMB4600, targeted at the enterprise storage market.
“We had to face a low peak cycle last year due to subdued demand, but I strongly believe that new product innovations will open up new markets and allow our business to grow,” he added.
Ng said the company has always invested heavily in research and development (R&D) for product development and enhancement. Its R&D expenditure has grown 33% to RM5 million in FY17, from RM2.7 million in FY15.
“For the last three quarters, we have already invested a total of RM3.82 million in R&D and the total investment planned for the whole year is RM5 million,” he added.
The company will launch an enhanced model of an RF tester with significant technology changes, for S&Ts this month.
“The product will be launched at the Semicon Taiwan exhibition which will be held next week. A major portion of the R&D fund for the past two years has been put into getting this product out,” he said.
The company has set up a physical office in Taiwan to cover the export market in this particular region.
“We are focused on further penetration into the Far East and China markets,” Ng said.
Aemulus has been exporting to Singapore, China, the US, UK, the Philippines, South Korea, Thailand and Germany.
The company’s core expertise is in the design and development of automated test equipment for semiconductor manufacturers, and outsourced semiconductor assembly and test companies.
Its customers are primarily large global multinational semiconductor manufacturers and outsourced semiconductor assembly and test companies.
Aemulus is looking at partnerships with Shanghai Testrong Technologies Co Ltd and Peregrine Semiconductor Corp.
In February, US-based Energous Corp, a wire-free charging technology solution provider, chose Aemulus to test its chips. Energous’ product, “WattUp”, is an RF-based charging solution that is intelligent, with scalable power via radio band, similar to a WiFi router.
Based on the company’s positive results and improving demand enterprise storage, S&T markets, CIMB Equities Research is maintaining a ‘Hold’ recommendation on Aemulus with a higher target price of 53 sen per share.
“We raise our FY17-FY19 forward earnings per share by 31% to 72% to account for the higher tester shipment volumes for the AE4600 and AE7600 models by about 15% to 30%, and margin expansion from higher utilisation,” the research firm noted in its report on Aemulus.
Aemulus’ share price closed at 60 sen yesterday, giving it a market capitalisation of