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26 February, 2014 - 07:40 By Tony Quested

Cash rich CSR pledges $50 million shareholder windfall

Joep van Beurden

Cambridge wireless technology company CSR plans to hand shareholders a $50 million bonanza in 2014.

CEO Joep van Beurden said the UK business had ended the year with $306.2m(£183.6m) in cash, cash equivalents and treasury deposits after buybacks of $67.8m (£40.65m).

“Given the strength of our financial position, our confidence in our future prospects and our focus on delivering returns to shareholders, the board is recommending a final dividend of $0.091 per ordinary share, implying a full year increase of 15 per cent year-on-year. In addition, we are proposing to return up to $50 million (£29.98m) to shareholders via a share buyback during the course of 2014.”

CSR’s Q4 and full-year results to December 27 underline a shift in focus towards gamechanging future technologies in auto & music, wearable technologies and the Internet of Things.

The company achieved higher profits on lower revenues, both in the fourth quarter and full year.

Q4 profit was $11.1m (£6.65m) – up from $10.3m (£6.175m) in Q4 2012 on revenues down to $208.2m (£124.8m) from $249.2m (£149.4m).

Full-year profit was up to $81.1m (£48.62m) from $55.4m (£33.2m) on revenues down to $960.7m (£576m) from $1.025 billion (£615m).

Van Beurden said: “2013 has seen CSR deliver good core growth, driven by a strong increase in Voice & Music revenue and a solid performance by Auto with growth starting in Bluetooth Smart, contributing to increased overall profitability and underlying earnings compared to 2012.

“Looking forward, we see good potential for our core business. In Auto, we are experiencing strong design win momentum for automotive factory-fit infotainment platform SoCs.

“We continue to see good underlying growth in Voice & Music, after taking account of the non-recurring growth in China in the first half of 2013. Our market leading aptX® audio codec technology added 17 licence agreements during Q4 2013 and is now being used for in-vehicle infotainment systems.

“We have a strong and growing pipeline of Tier One Bluetooth Smart design wins. We believe that Bluetooth Smart is emerging as a key technology for the Internet of Things (IoT) and have recently announced CSR Mesh, a disruptive new Bluetooth Smart technology which extends its use further into smart home and IoT applications.

“We expect first quarter 2014 revenues to be in the range of $170m (£102m) to $190m (£114m). We expect legacy products revenue in 2014 to decline by around 65 per cent compared to 2013 revenue.”

The share price was down fractionally on early London trading.

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Joep van Beurden

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