MEMSIC, a MEMS sensor manufacturer, announced this week financial results for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2010. The company says that its magnetic sensor sales continue to increase, due to the reported growing adoption of smartphones. MEMSIC's revenues rose to $11.4 million from $5.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2009. Gross margin was 41.1% compared to 47.8% in the 2009 quarter. Operating expenses totaled $6.3 million compared to $3.9 million in the 2009 quarter, including an increase in R&D expense to $2.3 million from $1.1 million. Net loss in the 2010 fourth quarter was $1.1 million, compared to net loss of $0.8 million in the prior-year period.
MEMSIC's CEO, Dr. Yang Zhao commented, "In addition to exceeding our quarterly revenue guidance, our bottom-line results were significantly better than projected. Sales of our magnetic sensor continued to grow as demand for Android-based smartphones expanded worldwide. Our highly competitive product and manufacturing capacity in China position MEMSIC well to benefit from the fast growth in this market. We expect this trend to continue through 2011 and are continuing to pursue new business opportunities with global Tier 1 mobile phone manufacturers.
"Our sales to the automotive sector continued to increase with the ramping up of production in vehicle stability control applications. In addition, revenue from industrial applications grew as a result of our Crossbow acquisition in January 2010.
"We were pleased to realize gross margin improvement from earlier this year as a result of manufacturing migration to China as well as on-going cost reduction efforts. Furthermore, with the addition of Dr. Paul Zavaracky, who came on board in January as President of North American and European Operations, we are putting high emphasis on growing business in North America and Europe.
"Our strong R&D investment reflects our focus on building a continuous pipeline of new products that take advantage of our unique technology platform – combining MEMSIC’s core competency in ultra-low-cost sensor product design and manufacturing with the multi-sensor system integration capabilities we acquired from Crossbow. Our new multi-sensor and MCU integrated system products will be targeted at both the IC level for the consumer and mobile market and the module level for the high-end industrial, automotive, and general aviation markets. Our overall goal is to position MEMSIC as a world expert and leader in sensor solutions targeted to a wide range of markets and customer applications."
The company's fourth-quarter 2010 results include revenue from the products MEMSIC acquired from Crossbow Technology in January 2010 and costs related to the addition of Crossbow engineering and sales staff. The 2010 and the 2009 fourth quarter results include $0.4 million and $0.3 million, respectively, in stock-based compensation.
For the year ended December 31, 2010, MEMSIC reported revenue of $38.7 million, a 36% increase from 2009. Net loss for 2010 was $7.4 million, compared to net income of $24,000 for 2009.
For the first quarter of 2011, MEMSIC anticipates revenue in the range of $11.5 to $12.0 million. Net loss, including stock-based compensation of $0.4 million, is expected to be in the range of $0.06 to $0.08 per share. Average diluted share count for the 2011 first quarter is estimated to be 24 million.