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Ingram's Bottom Line Improves in 2nd Quarter

July 30, 2004|Alex Pham | Times Staff Writer

Bolstered by a cautious revival in corporate spending and continued consumer appetite for gadgets, Ingram Micro Inc. on Thursday posted higher, albeit still slim, second-quarter profit on an 11% increase in sales.

The world's largest independent distributor of everything from plasma screens to digital cameras had net income of $25.9 million, or 16 cents a share, on $5.7 billion in sales in the quarter ended July 3. Last year, the Santa Ana-based company made $11.5 million, or 8 cents, on $5.2 billion in sales.

The results were slightly ahead of the expectations of analysts, who on average expected Ingram to earn $25 million, or 15 cents a share, according to a survey by Thomson First Call.

Sales, however, came in lower than anticipated as the company turned down money-losing contracts in volatile markets in China and India. Overall sales in Asia, which accounted for 10% of Ingram's revenue, fell 2% from a year ago to $558 million.

North America, which accounts for nearly half of Ingram's revenue, saw sales jump 9% from the same quarter a year ago to $2.8 billion.

"I'm more optimistic about North America than I've been in quite a while," Ingram Chief Executive Kent Foster said in an interview. "We're seeing growth in all customer and product segments, which indicates to me that the market is showing broad-based strength."

European sales grew 18% to $2.1 billion, driven by a strong Euro and Ingram's efforts to expand its operations there.

Ingram forecast third-quarter sales of $5.7 billion to $5.9 billion and net income of $25 million to $30 million, or 16 cents to 19 cents a share.

Its shares, which gained 46 cents to $13.72 on the New York Stock Exchange, rose to $13.77 in extended trading after the earnings announcement.

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