Flash Memory Lifts AMD's Bottom Line

Chipmaker returns to profitability as it reports strong second-quarter earnings.
Flash memory--the little storage chips present in a host of everyday items--are boosting the financial results of key chipmakers. A day after competitor Intel credited flash memory chips for strong earnings growth, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. cited growth in the same market for its profitable second quarter ended June 27, 2004.

AMD revenue in the second quarter of $1.3 billion was 96% higher than $645 million of revenue in the same quarter a year earlier. Net income in the quarter of $32 million blew away a net loss of $140 million in the corresponding quarter last year. Earnings per share in the quarter matched the improvement, as a 9 cent-per-share profit beat a 4 cent-per-share loss.

Robert Rivet, AMD's CFO, was the one who credited Spansion flash memory chip sales for the return to profitability. But after the most aggressive push in AMD's history, 32/64-bit processor sales were OK, according to a statement by Rivet, but secondary to the flash memory technology.

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