Tuesday, January 15, 2008
At the southern California based Goulds Pumps, Inc., Mr. Morrow implemented an activity based cost system bringing about a complete division turnaround for the manufacturer from loss to profitability. As a former Controller for Dun & Bradstreet Corporation's Donnelley Information Publishing, Mr. Morrow was responsible for finance, budgeting, and procurement services and served as a key member of the executive council responsible for implementation of a total quality management program which accounted for major sales growth over a three year period.
John Kang, Chairman of Liquidmetal Technologies commented, "Gerry joins Liquidmetal Technologies at an exciting time in the commercialization of our technology. Gerry is an experienced and mature CFO and has utilized his financial expertise to develop valuable financial systems to support operations in growth and changing environments throughout his career. His deep financial expertise will be valuable as the Company builds its business through internal growth and our licensed partners."
Monday, January 14, 2008
Monday January 14, 9:00 am ETRANCHO SANTA MARGARITA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Liquidmetal® Technologies, Inc. (OTCBB:LQMT - News) today announced that based upon preliminary review of its 2007 fourth quarter financial performance, the Company expects to report net revenue of approximately $8.6 million for the fourth quarter ending December 31, 2007, the highest level of quarterly revenue reported to date for the Company. Projected fourth quarter net revenue represents an increase from $7.1 million in the third quarter of 2007 and the $6.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2006. Projected net revenue does not include revenue of licensees from the manufacture and sale of Liquidmetal products although it includes royalty and material sales to our licensees.
Larry Buffington, Chief Executive Officer, commented, “The strong revenue growth in the fourth quarter was due in part to increased demand and adoption of our technology and continued momentum building in our strategy to segment our business into respective business categories, whether through our own subsidiary or a licensee, and allowing each business unit to focus and execute their respective strategies. We are pleased with the trend in the business.”
Liquidmetal Technologies will provide additional details of the fourth quarter financials during a regularly scheduled earnings call to be announced later next month. The Company does not intend to announce projected revenue every quarter prior to the filing of its periodic reports with the SEC.
This was expected, as this was announced at the shareholders meeting. (See post of shareholder's meeting summary).
While we certainly applaud the increases in revenue, they greatly fall short of the 60 million projected by Mr. Kang not to long ago; subsequent to that quantum leap of a forecast, he has whittled them down to 40 million and, finally, now a more realistic 30 or so million for FY 2007.
Conspicuously absent are any projections of bottom line and employment of the new machines, either in Liquidmetal Pyong-Taek or at any of the so-called "strategic partners" which Mr. Kang uses interchangeably with the term JOINT VENTURE.
Sage re-iterates that it takes 90 days to complete a purchase order for machines at Buhler and another 30 days to install, test and certify a machine cell for production on the plant floor.
This means, of course, that the earliest date for new machines (other than the one prototype) to be operational will be May 30th, which does not bode well for any expectations of bottom line being net earnings positive until the second half of FY 2008.
Mr. Kang: The Bottom line of this analysis is FOCUS on the BOTTOM LINE and EMPLOYMENT of the new machines!
MANIFEST A SENSE of URGENCY, PLEASE
Sunday, January 13, 2008
Vietnam is considered by many the “hottest” tiger in terms of near-term growth and buzz in manufacturing circles. Since U.S. trade sanctions were lifted in the 1990s, the economy has grown at a healthy 8-percent clip. The U.S. is now Vietnam's top trading partner. Exports have shot up as much 20 percent annually, according to data from ASEAN.
Vietnam joined the WTO within the last year. Its chief exports include textiles, footwear, and furniture. Vietnam's energy sector also is growing, with crude oil output on the rise. But there's little doubt that Vietnam will be a significant player in high-tech in the near future. In 2006, chipmaker Intel announced a $1-billion investment plan in an industrial park outside Ho Chi Minh City. That's more than the company has invested in China in the last decade.
Overall, capital investment in the manufacturing of electronics and computer products is expected to reach U.S.$3 billion in 2007, representing a big chunk of total foreign direct investment in the country.
Jabil, a St. Petersburg, Fla.-based contract manufacturer and supply chain services provider, opened a 55,000-square-foot facility in Ho Chi Minh City's Saigon Hi-Tech Park to serve Hewlett-Packard's imaging and printing business. “We are developing Vietnam as a production-for-export location,” says Bill Muir, Jabil's regional president for Asia. “Vietnam offers a globally competitive cost base, a strong workforce, and good balance to our Asia footprint.”
According to Kok Chwee Lui, VP, HP Imaging & Printing manufacturing operations, “On our own, HP probably would not be investing in an HP factory in Vietnam, but Jabil can start small and then bring in other customers. Also, Jabil can drive material costs down by pooling the spending power of its many customers, which helps us bring new supply bases or new ecosystems into the equation. If we were on our own, we would just have our own suppliers, but working with Jabil gives us the benefit of their combined supply base.”
According to a recent report from East-West Associates, a Charlotte, N.C.-based consultancy, “Vietnam is a more favored low-cost locale compared to China,” adding that Vietnamese workers make about $60 per month—i.e., less than their counterparts on the highly developed south coast of China. Plus, they work a longer work week.
In response, the Chinese government encourages investment in the less-developed Western and interior regions of China. The problem is workers in the Chinese hinterland are less skilled, and transport costs are necessarily higher. Instead, many manufacturers apply a “China plus one” strategy, whereby they open plants in a second Asian nation to complement their Chinese production.
To some degree, China is a victim of its success, while Vietnam feeds off its own. With large players like Intel and Jabil moving into Vietnam, many smaller suppliers will follow.What about infrastructure?
Of course, global manufacturers share the same concerns about Vietnam's infrastructure as they do about China's. Vietnamese commerce officials appear to have learned some lessons from China and are investing heavily in ports, power plants, and telecom systems. There are multibillion-dollar energy projects in both southern and northern provinces.
Technology will likely play a big role in solving what might be called the high cost of sourcing in low-cost countries. For instance, recognizing that fast, efficient customs processing is very attractive to exporters, the Vietnam customs bureau is working with American companies—including FedEx and Unisys Corp.—on an e-manifest project to streamline clearance at major seaports and airports.
The system allows Customs agents to screen and review cargo manifests in advance of shipment arrival. E-manifest also improves risk management and profiling. It appears that Vietnam believes stronger supply chain security, achieved through government-industry collaboration, could provide a competitive edge against China.
Tuesday, January 8, 2008
The first was $0.55 per share in May of 2004.
The second was today, Dec 8, 2007 at $0.63 share, two years after the Dec 2005 low of $0.64
Once a $22.75 per share stock at its height from the pumped IPO of $15.50,
This stock is now valued today at 1/36th of its opening week high in 2002.
The all time low of $0.55 in May of 2004 is certain to be achieved for the second time in the company's history.
Jabil Circuit EVP Buys SharesDecember 31, 2007 2:19 PM ET
NEW YORK (AP) - The executive vice president and consumer division chief executive of Jabil Circuit Inc., an electronics manufacturing service provider, bought 19,730 shares of common stock, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Friday.
In a Form 4 filed with the SEC, John P. Lovato reported he bought the shares for $15.15 to $15.17 apiece.
Insiders file Form 4s with the SEC to report transactions in their companies' shares. Open market purchases and sales must be reported within two business days of the transaction.
Jabil is based in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Wednesday, January 2, 2008
On December 20, 2007, Jabil Circuit, Inc. (the "Company") amended (the "Amendment") its existing bridge credit facility that it entered into as of December 21, 2006 (the "Bridge Facility"). As a result of the Amendment, (1) the termination date of the Bridge Facility was extended from December 20, 2007 to June 17, 2008, (2) the Bridge Facility was converted to a $200,000,000 revolving credit facility that is available only if the Company has fully drawn on the revolving credit portion of the Company's existing amended and restated five year unsecured credit facility dated as of July 19, 2007 (the "Credit Facility") and (3) as described below in the third paragraph, certain other portions of the Bridge Facility were also amended (the Bridge Facility, as so amended, shall be referred to herein as the "Amended Bridge Facility"). Also on December 20, 2007, the Company drew $400,000,000 on the revolving credit portion of the Credit Facility in order to pay down the full $400,000,000 outstanding under the term loan portion of the Bridge Facility.
Immediately following consummation of the transactions described above, the Company's debt obligations included no amounts outstanding under the Amended Bridge Facility, $545,000,000 outstanding under the revolving credit portion of the Credit Facility and $400,000,000 outstanding under the term loan portion of the Credit Facility (which was previously borrowed by the Company). Based on these amounts outstanding, the Company currently has $255,000,000 available under the revolving credit portion of the Credit Facility (which amount could be increased by up to $200,000,000 if agreed to by the lenders under the Credit Facility), and $200,000,000 available under the Amended Bridge Facility (which is only available to be drawn upon once the revolving credit portion of the Credit Facility is fully drawn).
The Amendment specifies that the proceeds of the revolving credit advances under the Amended Bridge Facility shall be used for general corporate purposes of the Company and its subsidiaries. Pursuant to the Amendment, interest and fees on advances under the Amended Bridge Facility continue to be based on the Company's unsecured long-term indebtedness rating as determined by Standard & Poor's Rating Service and Moody's Investor Service. The interest rate has been increased, such that interest is charged at either a rate equal to 0.300% to 1.500% above the base rate or a rate equal to 1.300% to 2.500% above the Eurocurrency rate, where the base rate represents the greater of Citibank, N.A.'s prime rate or 0.50% plus the federal funds rate, and the Eurocurrency rate represents the applicable London Interbank Offered Rate, each as more fully defined in the Bridge Facility. The applicable interest rate, whether based on the base rate or the Eurocurrency rate, will be increased by 0.25% on and after March 20, 2008. Fees include extension fees payable on March 20, 2008 and unused commitment fees based on the amount of the lenders' commitments minus the principal amounts of any outstanding advances made by the lenders. Based on the Company's current unsecured long-term indebtedness rating as determined by Standard & Poor's Rating Service and Moody's Investor Service, the current rate of interest (excluding the unused commitment fees and other fees) on a Eurocurrency rate draw would be 0.500% above the base rate or 1.500% above the Eurocurrency rate, as defined above.
Citicorp North America, Inc. is the agent under the Amendment and the Bridge Facility, and one of its affiliates is the agent under the Credit Facility. Some or all of the lenders party to the Amendment and the Bridge Facility, and certain of their affiliates, have various other relationships with the Company and its subsidiaries involving the provision of financial services, including cash management, loans, letter of credit and bank guarantee facilities, investment banking and trust services. In addition, the Company and some of its subsidiaries have entered into foreign exchange contracts and other derivative arrangements with certain of the lenders and their affiliates.
The foregoing description of the Amendment is qualified in its entirety by reference to the complete terms and conditions of: (i) the Amendment (a copy of which is filed as Exhibit 10.34 to this Current Report on Form 8-K), (ii) the Bridge Facility (a copy of which was filed as Exhibit 10.26 to the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for its 2006 fiscal year) and (iii) the Credit Facility (a copy of which was filed as Exhibit 10.33 to Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for its 2007 fiscal year).
The second was $0.64 share in Dec of 2005.
Now, $0.65 per share the first trading day of 2008.
Once a $22.75 per share stock at its height from the pumped IPO of $15.50,
This stock is now valued today at its low, 1/35th of its opening high in 2002.