Edinburgh, UK In its first year as a listed company Wolfson Microelectronics increased both turnover by 125% to $75.7million and profit before tax by 247% to $12.5million. R&D expenditure in the financial year to the end of December 2003 nearly doubled to $9.4million.
David Milne, chief executive officer of Wolfson, said, “This is the second year in a row we have doubled our turnover. Our growth is driven by demand from a host of new digital consumer products that need the high performance mixed signal interfaces we supply.”
“In 2004 we are continuing to see a healthy build-up of our first half order book and are excited by the interest customers are showing in our new products for multimedia mobile phones and digital cameras.”
The improved profit level has been aided by an increase of 1.7% in the gross margin (excluding legacy business) from 46.6% to 48.3% during the year and by the increased scale of the business.
In 2003, Wolfson invested over $9m in R&D and introduced a total of 15 new products which increased the total number of products to over 60 at the end of the year.
Sales to the Asia Pacific region (excludingJapan) have increased, and now represent 83% of revenues, up from 76% in 2002. This is a result of the trend for companies to subcontract manufacturing to this region. A notable development during the year has been the increase in sales of products in Japan which now represents 8% of revenues.
To support the growing number of customers, the company opened offices in China and Korea, and increased both sales and technical staff in other locations.
During the year the company increased its manufacturing capacity by qualifying TSMC as an additional wafer foundry and Carsem and OSE as assembly and test facilities. Product testing capacity has also been enhanced by the investment of $2.7m by the company in optimised test platforms which have been consigned to its subcontractors for its exclusive use.
Staff grew by 59 to 155 at the end of the year with the core engineering team increasing by 28 to a total of 75 people. The Company has invested in a new larger facility in Edinburgh and is establishing a design centre in Swindon.