AU Optronics Corp. ('AUO' or the 'Company') (TAIEX: 2409; NYSE: AUO) today held a meeting of the Board of Directors and Supervisors, at which the Board approved its unaudited financial results based on ROC GAAP for the nine months ended September 30, 2004. Figures in US dollars are translated at the exchange rate of NT$33.6022 per US dollar.
Unaudited consolidated net sales and net income for the nine months ended September 2004 reached of NT$128,616 million (US$3,828 million) and NT$30,189 million (US$898 million), up 82.5% and 273% compared to the same period last year, respectively. Cumulative earnings per share for this period was NT$6.35 (US$0.19 per common share and US$1.89 per ADS). Third quarter 2004 revenue totaled NT$38,755 million (US$1,153 million), a decline of 20.1% compared to 2Q04. Unaudited net income for 3Q04 was NT$4,134 million (US$123 million), down 71.3% QoQ.
Unconsolidated net sales for the first nine months and third quarter of 2004 totaled NT$125,538 million (US$3,736 million) and NT$38,658 million (US$1,158 million), respectively.
"Due to the weaker-than-expected market environment and substantial price correction in large size panels during 3Q04, AUO's profitability was negatively impacted. Gross profit of NT$7,064 million in third quarter 2004 decreased 58.8% sequentially from NT$17,152 million in 2Q04. Gross margin also contracted from 35.3% in 2Q04 to 18.2% in 3Q04. Operating profit in 3Q04 totaled NT$4,058 million, while operating margin declined from 30.4% in 2Q04 to 10.5% in 3Q04". Commented Mr. Max Cheng, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of AU Optronics Corp.
Dr. Hui Hsiung, AUO's Executive Vice President, noted that "AUO's unit shipment of large size panels in the first nine months of 2004 totaled 13.3 million, posting a 62% year-over-year growth. In particular, shipment for AUO's small and medium size panels, mostly for consumer electronics applications, exceeded 10 million in 3Q04 on seasonal strength, while cumulative shipment in the first nine months 2004 reached 23.6 million, up 57% YoY".
In addition, AUO's comprehensive product lines, encompassing small to large size TFT LCD panels, allowed AUO the flexibility to manage and optimize its product mix. Among the key product lines, AUO is able to deliver strong results from its aggressive roll-out of small and medium size display products, which accounted for 17% in revenues in 3Q04, compared to 9% of revenues in 2Q04. LCD TV panels also posted strong growth and accounted for 9% of revenues in 3Q04, up from 7% in 2Q04. Notebook PC panel sales accounted for 20% of revenues in 3Q04, increased from 18% in 2Q04, while monitor panels accounted for 53% of sales, down from 65% in 2Q04.