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Orange County Earnings

General Automation Inc. Reports Profit

November 06, 1986

As it has been predicting for several months now, General Automation Inc. on Wednesday reported its first quarter of operating profit in five years, reporting net earnings of $376,000 for the initial quarter of fiscal 1987. In the same period last year, the Anaheim computer maker posted a net loss of $1.2 million.

Although $263,000 of the first-quarter profit came from a gain on tax credits from previous losses, net earnings for the period ended Sept. 30 included a $113,000 profit from operations.

Revenues for the period totaled $9.8 million, up 28% from $7.6 million for that period a year earlier.

Leonard Mackenzie, chairman and chief executive of the company, said in an interview Wednesday that he believes that General Automation will continue to post operating profits throughout the fiscal year. He said the company now is looking to invest in businesses whose successes will help it grow. An example, he said, would be for General Automation to invest in a company that already distributes General Automation's business computers, providing it with funds to increase its distribution network.

Mackenzie, who several years ago pegged his company's survival to the success of its then-new Zebra business computer line, said that sales figures show the computer has been accepted.

He said the company, which has trimmed its work force to 365 employees, from a peak of 2,600 in 1980, has even begun hiring a few more sales and marketing people.

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