Bell slides to $5m loss in Q1 ahead of Avnet acquisition

Bell Microproducts managed to push up its sales by double digits during the first quarter but slid to a substantial loss in what is likely to be its last quarter reported under the current ownership. Revenues for the period ended 31 March climbed 12% year-on-year to $800.6m, a sequential decrease of

Bell Microproducts managed to push up its sales by double digits during the first quarter but slid to a substantial loss in what is likely to be its last quarter reported under the current ownership.

Revenues for the period ended 31 March climbed 12% year-on-year to $800.6m, a sequential decrease of 4% as it swung to a $5m loss compared to $12.9m profits last quarter and a $4m loss in the comparable quarter in 2009.

Due to the pending acquisition by Avnet - which cost $1.7m in professional fees during Q1 - Bell provided no management statements to accompany the results but revealed that global distribution sales grew 17% to $716.4m or 11% excluding the forex impact.

In North America, total sales grew 14% to $330.7m and fell 7% sequentially in line with seasonal trends; distribution turnover climbed 30% while its SI business ProSys declined 16%.

Closer to home net sales went up 12% in Europe to $337.8m, "fuelled by sales of computer platforms and disk drives together with the positive effects of currency rate changes...partially offset by a reduction in sales of software due to the timing of certain vendor promotions."

The relatively smaller Latin American operation grew 8% to $132.1m, propelled by sales of semiconductors and forex conversions.

Split into divisions, components and peripherals (51% of total sales) grew 33% year-on-year driven by HDD and semiconductors. The solutions unit decreased 4% on the same quarter a year ago and was down 13% sequentially.

The outstanding debt grew 11% to $389m due to the payment of trade liabilities related to year-end inventory purchases.

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