Applied Materials' sales orders soared by 150 percent

Sales of manufacturing equipment for semiconductors, flat panel displays and solar kit meant Applied Materials turned in net sales of $2.89 billion and net profit of $468 million for its fourth financial quarter. Demand is so strong that Applied’s backlog grew by $114 million to $3.24 billion in the fourth quarter.

Full year orders for the manufacturing giant grew by 150 percent compared to its previous year, while net sales were up by 90 percent, Applied said. And the outlook is good for next year, said Mike Splinter, CEO and chairman of the company (pictured). “We are seeing strong momentum in our business as we enter 2011,” he said.

Breaking the quarter out, its Silicon Systems Group turned in sales of 41.48 nillion, with foundries accounting for 47 percent of its business, DRA 20 percent, flash memory nine percent, and logic and others 24 percent. In the financial year, orders for that division tripled to $5.76 billion.

Its display division, however showed a drop of 27 percent from its third financial quarter to $175 million, caused by lower demand. But for the year, display orders doubled to $799 million.

Its solar division had record orders of $546 million in its fourth financial quarter, up 55 percent compared to the previous quarter.

Applied’s gross margin for the fourth quarter was 42.2 percent, and during the quarter it bought back 13.3 million shares of its common stock.