June 12, 2020 / 7:38 AM / a month ago

Tech firm IQE expects to return to profit in first half, shares jump

(Reuters) - British technology firm IQE on Friday forecast an at least 27% jump in revenue for the first half and said it expects to return to profitability, thanks to strong performance of its wireless equipment and light sensors businesses.

Shares of the company, which makes semiconductor wafers for chips used in Apple products, rose 8.6% to 42.88 pence in early trading.

The revenue growth, IQE’s fastest in seven years according to Peel Hunt analysts, comes as demand for computer products jumps due to the global shift to working from home because of the coronavirus crisis.

IQE said it expects first-half revenue of at least 85 million pounds ($106.98 million) and a low single digit adjusted operating profit. Its performance last year was impacted by Sino-U.S. trade tensions, which roiled the chipmaking industry.

The company did not give a forecast for the full year and said there was there was “considerable risk” for the second half due to uncertainties around the pandemic.

IQE, however, said its production sites did not face any disruption from the pandemic and the roll out of next-generation 5G technology for phones along with demand for products it supplies to the U.S. military were likely to cushion any hit from the crisis.

Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni

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