SanDisk's 3Q earnings triple to lift stock higher

SanDisk prospers again in 3rd quarter as mobile device makers snap up its flash-memory chips

Associated Press

MILPITAS, Calif. (AP) -- SanDisk Corp.'s third-quarter earnings more than tripled as the growing popularity of smartphones and tablet computers fed demand for its flash-memory chips and other storage components.

The Milpitas, Calif., company said Wednesday that it earned $277 million, or $1.18 per share, during the three months ended Sept. 29. That compared to net income of $76.5 million, or 31 cents per share, at the same time last year.

If not for accounting charges for past acquisitions and certain other items, SanDisk said it would have earned $1.59 per share. That figure exceeded the average estimate of $1.31 per share among analysts surveyed by FactSet.

Revenue for the period climbed 28 percent from last year to $1.63 billion — about $60 million above analyst projections.

The quarter included revenue from Smart Storage Systems, which SanDisk acquired in late August for $307 million in cash.

In a Wednesday conference call, the company predicted its revenue in the final quarter of the year will range from $1.65 billion to $1.73 billion. Analysts had been expecting revenue of $1.67 billion for the period, according to FactSet.

SanDisk has been on a roll since Apple Inc. added it to its list of iPhone suppliers. The company also sells parts to other makers of smartphones and other devices that rely on flash memory.

After Wednesday's result came out, SanDisk's stock gained $1.51, or 2.4 percent, to $64.45 in extended trading. If investors react similarly in Thursday's regular trading session, the stock will establish a new 52-week high.

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