Newport predicts record 2012 first quarter orders

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Newport is predicting record new orders for the first quarter of this year after posting a final year 2011 sales result of $545 million, an almost 14 per cent sales increase on 2010.

The first quarter of 2012 is expected to see sales at a similar level to the fourth quarter of 2011 because of strong overall order activity. The record order prediction is partly based on the receipt of a $36.7 million order for ultrafast lasers used in surgical procedures.

The fourth quarter 2011 result was $161 million, which is a 21 per cent increase over the same period in 2010. Newport’s total 2011 sales were also aided by $36 million in from the companies it acquired, Ophir and High Q Laser. Newport has also bought ILX Lightwave, but that occurred in January.

‘2011 was an outstanding year for Newport. We continued to deliver solid financial results and executed well on our strategic agenda with the acquisitions of Ophir Optronics and High Q Laser [and ILX Lightwave],’ said Robert Phillippy, Newport's president and chief executive officer. ‘These three businesses improve our presence in our target markets and expand our portfolio of photonics technologies and products.’

While first quarter 2012 is expected to see record orders with sales on a par with fourth quarter 2011, expense levels are expected to be slightly higher in this first quarter due to what Newport says is the ‘seasonal nature of certain expenses… including the amortisation of newly established intangibles and the full tax provision.'