Growing Company Could See Solid Gains

Just in January, I wrote about an exciting small, domestic company that’s doing great as a supplier in the solar energy business.

The company is Amtech Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ/ASYS) and it just reported very solid numbers.

Amtech Systems manufactures specialized equipment that is used to automate the handling of silicon wafers and semiconductors that are used in the fabrication of solar cells and semiconductor devices.

The company, founded in 1981, was first called Quartz Engineering & Materials, Inc. before it changed its name to Amtech Systems in 1987. The company is based in Tempe, Arizona.

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In its latest quarter, the fiscal quarter of 2008 ended December 31, 2007, the company reported that its sales grew 24% to almost twelve million dollars, up from $9.5 million in the comparable quarter.

Gross margin in the first quarter posted a solid gain growing to 30.3%, up from 25.3% in the comparable first quarter of fiscal 2007.

Net income in the latest period was a modest $108,000, or $0.01 per diluted share, as compared to net income of $6,000, or nil per diluted share. Net income was low because the company continues to invest heavily in its growth.

Amtech Systems reported that its latest order backlog was just shy of fifty million dollars, representing a 174% increase over the backlog at December 31, 2006.

Looking ahead to the second quarter of fiscal 2008, Amtech anticipates that its sales will grow to between around sixteen and a half million dollars and seventeen million dollars, representing growth of approximately 58% to 63% over the fiscal 2007 second quarter.

Currently, the company expects fiscal 2008 to see revenues climb to between sixty-eight million dollars and seventy-five million dollars, representing growth of 48% to 63% over fiscal 2007. Solar revenues are expected to be the primary growth driver, while semiconductor revenues are expected to be a little weaker.

I like this little company and its long-term business prospects. Once it achieves sales of over one hundred million dollars a year, it will also make for a great takeover candidate.