New boss at Apple supplier ARM hails soaring chip sales


The company behind the microchips in Apple’s iPhones and iPads today hailed a “strong start” to the year, with more than two billion devices using their chips shipped in the past three months alone.

Cambridge-based ARM Holdings said second-quarter revenue was up 24 per cent compared with the same period in 2012 at $264.3 million (£172 million), with profit also up 30 per cent at $86.6 million.

The Footsie-listed firm, which makes its money by licensing microchip designs to manufacturers, said 2.4 billion devices using ARM-designed chips were shipped across the world between April and June, 20 per cent more than in the same period last year.

In his first set of results since taking over from Warren East at the start of the month, chief executive Simon Segars said the growth was driven by improvements across all markets.

“When you look at the 2.4 billion chips that our licensees sold in the quarter, about half of them were into mobile phones and the other half were into a very wide range of products such as smart TVs, DVD players, anti-lock breaking systems in cars – you name it,” he said. “It’s been a strong start to the year for us.”

But first-half profit fell because of a one-off £41.8 million charge settling a patent dispute. Despite this, ARM said it was set “at least” to meet its profit expectations.

The result came as Apple beat Wall Street expectations last night with its quarterly results, even though its profits continued to decline.

The company booked $35.3 billion in revenues for the three months to the end of June, with 31.2 million iPhones shipped over the quarter, far more than the predicted range of between 26 million to 27 million. But iPad shipments were lower, easing to 14.6 million against 17 million last year.

Chief executive Tim Cook promised to satisfy demand for follow-ups to the iPhone and iPad. “We are laser-focused and working hard on some amazing new products we will introduce in the fall and across 2014,” he said.

The lack of recent product launches has weighed on Apple’s share price since last year. Recent hints about possible investments in wearable technology and rumours about the potential for an Apple-branded TV have raised hopes, though it has yet to make a concrete announcement on either front.