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Micron Technology – one of the world’s largest memory companies – reported its results for the first quarter of its fiscal 2004. Following Infineon Technology and some other producers, this influential DRAM manufacturer reported $25 million profit, indicating an important rebound of random access memory industry.

Boise, Idaho-based Micron declared $1.1 billion revenue with operating income of $22 million and net income of $1 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2004. These results compare to a $316 million net loss on sales of $685 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2003 and a $123 million net loss on sales of $889 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2003.

The company’s sales were 25% higher in the first quarter of fiscal 2004 as compared to the immediately preceding quarter as a result of an approximate 15% increase in megabits sold and a 7% increase in average megabit selling prices.

“We are pleased with the improvements in gross margin accomplished over successive quarters. The first quarter gross margin of 26% is, in part, a result of worldwide cost reduction efforts, gains in manufacturing efficiencies and our leadership in process technology. Our advanced 6f2 products, which have a smaller die size using the same process technology as standard 8f2 products, are ramping effectively and our manufacturing migration to 110nm process technology leads the industry. We are also pleased with the market leadership performance of our next generation products; we are the only company currently shipping all densities of DDR-II DRAM and our 2 and 3Mpixel CMOS image sensor products are “best-in-class” in performance and image quality,” said Steve Appleton, Micron’s CEO and President.

The company’s megabit production of memory products increased approximately 10% in the first quarter of fiscal 2004 as compared to the immediately preceding quarter. The megabit production gains were principally due to improved manufacturing yields and transitions to 0.11 micron devices. At the end of the first quarter of fiscal 2004, finished goods inventories were at historically low levels relative to the sales volume for the quarter.

The firm's operating income for the first quarter of fiscal 2004 includes losses of $25 million from changes in currency exchange rates as a result of a weaker dollar, and a $21 million benefit primarily from sales of equipment associated with the company’s restructure activities in fiscal 2003. The generally higher sales prices for equipment were reflective of improved market conditions across the semiconductor industry, according to Micron.

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