SAN DIEGO -- December 4, 2003 -- Qualcomm Incorporated (Nasdaq: QCOM) today updated its financial guidance for the first fiscal quarter ending December 28, 2003.
The following statements are forward looking and actual results may differ materially. Please see description of certain risk factors in this release and Qualcomm's reports on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for a more complete description of risks.
Based on the current business outlook we now anticipate first fiscal quarter revenues excluding the Qualcomm Strategic Initiatives (QSI) segment to increase approximately 36-38 percent sequentially and 11-12 percent year-over-year. We now anticipate first fiscal quarter earnings per share excluding the QSI segment to be $0.47-$0.48, an increase of 62-66 percent sequentially and 12-14 percent year-over-year. This estimate is based on the shipment of approximately 32-33 million Mobile Station ModemTM (MSMTM) phone chips during the quarter.
On November 5, 2003, we estimated first fiscal quarter revenues excluding the QSI segment to increase approximately 16-22 percent sequentially and decrease year-over-year approximately 1-6 percent. We had anticipated first fiscal quarter earnings per share to be $0.37-$0.40, compared to $0.42 in the year ago quarter. These estimates were based on the shipment of approximately 27-28 million MSM phone chips during the quarter. We had expected 106-108 million CDMA phones to be sold in calendar 2003.
Royalty reports from our licensees, received in the first fiscal quarter for CDMA products sold in the fourth fiscal quarter ended September 28, 2003, indicate sales of approximately 31 million new CDMA subscriber units compared to our estimate of 26 million units for that quarter. These royalty reports also indicate that the average selling price of new CDMA units increased slightly compared to the third fiscal quarter reports. We now expect total new CDMA subscriber units shipped in calendar 2003 to be 110-112 million units.
"We are seeing stronger growth than anticipated in all CDMA markets as operators continue to deploy and expand 3G networks, providing high-quality voice and advanced data services over a broad range of phones. Increased sales of mid- and high-tier phones featuring high-resolution color screens, mega-pixel cameras and position location resulted in a slight increase of the average selling price offsetting increased sales of low-priced, entry-level phones. In an increasing number of markets, the high data rate of 1xEV-DO is enabling low-cost data and proving increasingly attractive to enterprises and individuals. Phone cameras remain a strong driver for phone upgrades as consumers recognize the pleasure and value of photo messaging," said Dr. Irwin Mark Jacobs, chairman and CEO, Qualcomm. "Early reports have increased our optimism regarding the positive impact of local number portability on our business. The introduction of unified licenses in India also appears to be stimulating CDMA growth. Based on orders to date and current customer projections, we believe strength from the first fiscal quarter will extend into the next quarter and now expect MSM phone chip shipments of 26-30 million units in the March quarter compared to approximately 28 million units in the March quarter 2003."
On November 5, 2003, we estimated total Qualcomm revenues for the first fiscal quarter to decrease year-over-year approximately 1-5 percent and total Qualcomm earnings per share of $0.25-$0.28, including an estimated $0.12 loss per share attributed to the QSI segment. Based on the current business outlook, we now expect total revenues to increase year-over-year by approximately 11-13 percent. We now expect total earnings per share of approximately $0.36-$0.37, including an estimated $0.11 loss per share attributed to the QSI segment. Due to their nature, certain income and expense items such as realized gains and losses, gains or losses on derivatives, income related to the use of our FCC Auction Discount Voucher and asset impairments cannot be accurately forecast. Accordingly, the Company excludes such items from its business outlook, and actual results may vary materially from the business outlook if the Company incurs any such income or expense items.
Qualcomm Incorporated (www.qualcomm.com) is a leader in developing and delivering innovative digital wireless communications products and services based on the Company's CDMA digital technology. Headquartered in San Diego, California, Qualcomm is included in theS&P500 Index and is a 2003 FORTUNE 500® company traded on The Nasdaq Stock Market® under the ticker symbol QCOM.
Note Regarding Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures
The Company presents financial information excluding the Qualcomm Strategic Initiatives (QSI) segment to facilitate evaluation by management, investors and analysts of its ongoing core operating businesses, including Qualcomm CDMA Technologies (QCT), Qualcomm Technology Licensing (QTL) and Qualcomm Wireless&Internet (QWI). QSI results relate to strategic investments for which the Company has exit strategies of varying durations. Management believes that the information excluding QSI presents a more representative measure of the operating and liquidity performance of the Company because it excludes the effect of fluctuations in the value of investments that are unrelated to the Company's operational performance. The financial information excluding QSI should be considered in addition, not as a substitute for, or superior to, financial measures calculated in accordance with GAAP. Reconciliations between total Qualcomm results and results excluding QSI are presented on the Company's web site athttp://www.qualcomm.com.
Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
In addition to the historical information contained herein, this news release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ substantially from those referred to herein due to a number of factors, including but not limited to risks associated with: changing global economic conditions, particularly in the telecommunications and Internet-related industries and the resulting uncertainty in forecasting future results; timing and receipt of license fees and royalties; integrated circuit inventory and order levels; the Company's ability to execute additional 3G licenses; the scale-up, acceptance and operations of CDMA systems, including CDMA2000 1xEV-DO and systems in new markets such as China and India; the ability to sustain or improve operational efficiency and profitability; decreases in the rate of growth in CDMA-based wireless data and Internet access or the CDMA subscriber population; strategic investments, loans, acquisitions or divestitures the Company has or may pursue; the value realized on sale of the Vesper Companies' business or assets; changes in the fair values of marketable securities and derivative instruments held; the development, deployment and commercial acceptance of evolving CDMA technology standards; developments in current or future litigation; customer receivables and performance guarantees; component shortages; and international business activities, as well as the other risks detailed from time-to-time in the Company's SEC reports.