Tuesday, printed circuit board maker Adeptron Technologies Corp. (ATQ.TO) posted a profit in the fourth quarter, helped by increased sales and a gain in embedded derivatives.

The company's net income totaled C$580 thousand or C$0.01 per share, compared to a net loss of C$5.93 million or C$0.16 per share in the prior year quarter.

Fourth-quarter of 2007 included non-recurring charges relating to goodwill impairment and restructuring that had a significant negative impact to income.

Quarterly sales advanced 31% to C$12.9 million from the previous year's sales of C$9.92 million.

The strong growth in sales were propelled by a ramp up in sales from new customer wins and from a customer base in relatively strong-performing, diversified market sectors including educational, commercial and non-consumer segments of industrial, medical & RF wireless.

During the latest quarter, gross margin improved to 14.7% from 13.7% in the same quarter of last year, largely due to higher sales level across all three of its North American manufacturing sites and the changes in the mix of customers, products, and turnkey versus consignment production.

Michael Marti, President & CEO of Adeptron said, During 2008 we were able to repay over C$5.5 million of a subordinated debenture and other term debt. We were able to make good progress on cost reduction and cost containment initiatives and we are continuing to advance these initiatives throughout 2009.

For the full year 2008, the company reported a net loss of C$871 thousand or C$0.01 per share, compared to a net loss of C$6.86 million or C$0.19 per share in 2007. Annual sales increased 11% to C$42.6 million from C$38.4 million reported in the previous year.

Looking ahead, the company expects first-quarter and fiscal 2009 sales to increase significantly despite the current severe economic recession.

Among other players in the sector, the Toronto, Canada-based Celestica Inc. (CLS, CLS.TO) posted a wider loss in the fourth quarter, hurt by goodwill write-off charge and decrease in revenues. For the first quarter, the company expects adjusted earnings to be in the range of $0.07 - $0.13 per share, on revenues between $1.4 billion and $1.6 billion.

Peer, Flextronics International Ltd. (FLEX) recently announced restructuring plans aimed at rationalizing company's global manufacturing capacity and infrastructure to overcome the current macroeconomic conditions and lower demand from its Original equipment Manufacturer or OEM customers. The restructuring activities include a reduction in workforce and capacity.

The Singapore-based Flextronics reported a wider loss in the third quarter, dented by charges recognized for provisions for doubtful accounts receivable and inventory write-downs. The company expects fourth-quarter adjusted earnings of $0.02 - $0.07 per share and revenues of $5.5 billion - $6.5 billion. GAAP earnings are projected to be lower than the guidance provided herein by about $0.05 per share for quarterly intangible amortization and stock-based compensation expense.

Adeptron shares, which have been trading between C$0.04 and C$0.15 in the past 52 weeks, closed Monday's trading session at C$0.10.

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