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27 January 2014

Riber’s full-year revenue falls 14% to €23.5m in 2013

Riber S.A. of Bezons, France, which manufactures molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) systems as well as evaporation sources and effusion cells, has reported revenue of €13.2m for fourth-quarter 2013, up 23.4% on €10.7m a year ago. However, full-year 2013 revenue was €23.5m, down 14% on 2012’s €27.4m. This was also slightly below the target of €24-26m, as a result of an order that was initially scheduled for 2013 being deferred. Nevertheless, Riber expects to record a profit for 2013.

In 2013, despite a sluggish economic environment, Riber benefited from its strategic positioning in research markets, compensating for a downturn in industrial markets due to excess capacity. Business with industrial customers represented just 4% of total revenue, down from 23% in 2012.

Compared with MBE system revenue of €19.4m in 2012 (€15.6m for research and €3.8m for production), MBE system revenue in 2013 is down 13% to €16.9m (all for research). Sales of systems to research customers are hence up 9% on 2012 (17 machines invoiced, versus 15 in 2012), as Riber is benefiting from growth in research projects for new optoelectronics or power electronics applications. No production systems were sold, compared with two in 2012, due to the current excess capacity in RF component manufacturing. Riber is hence focusing its activities on developing MBE for new applications.

The weak level of demand from industrial RF customers has affected production MBE service activities, for which revenue is down 44% from €1.2m to €0.7m. This has been offset by the development of sales of MBE cells and related accessories to other types of customer (up 33% from €1.3m to €1.8m), reflecting the impact of the commercial action plan rolled out at the end of 2012.

Sales of cells for industrial operators in the organic light-emitting diode (OLED) flat-screen and thin-film solar panel markets have remained low, following the slowdown in investment in both of these sectors due to the general environment. Revenue for services, accessories and cells fell 78% from €1.2m in 2012 to just €0.3m in 2013. However, Riber says that it has continued to strengthen its position in these high-potential markets by focusing on innovation (developing new ranges of cells) and technical and commercial proximity to the leading players (with Riber Korea being created in second-half 2013).

Total revenue for services & accessories fell 13% from €6m in 2012 to €5.3m in 2013. Total revenue for cells & sources fell 35% from €2m in 2012 to €1.3m in 2013.

As of the end of December 2013, the geographic breakdown of Riber’s revenue was: Asia (45%), Europe (31%, including Russia) and the American continent (24%).

The order book at end-December 2013 totaled €7m, down 42% on €12.1m a year ago. However, with four research systems ordered in China, France and Belgium during Q4/2013, Riber saw a considerable improvement in orders compared with the previous three quarters (followed by an additional order recorded at the start of 2014 in the USA). Although for full-year 2013 systems orders are down 60% from €10.1m in 2012 to €4m, this includes five research MBE systems for delivery in 2014. Also, Riber is benefiting from orders for services and accessories rising by 63% from €1.7m to €2.8m. Orders for cells and sources are down 50% from €0.2m to €0.1m.

Riber will report its earnings for full-year 2013 on 3 April.

See related items:

Riber’s 2013 revenue to end-September down 39% year-on-year to €10.2m

Riber's first-half losses double after sales fall 17% year-on-year

Riber’s revenue impacted by pause in system sales in Q1, but research system orders continue unabated

Riber’s revenue rises 47% in Q4/2012

Tags: Riber MBE

Visit: www.riber.com

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