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Read-Rite tops 4Q estimates, sees 1Q profit

Read-Rite (Nasdaq: RDRT) beat consensus analyst estimates in the fourth quarter and raised expectations for the first quarter.

After market close Wednesday, the maker of storage drive components reported a fiscal fourth quarter loss of $16.1 million, or 25 cents per share, excluding one-time events. First Call's survey of three analysts predicted a loss of 39 cents per share for the quarter ended Oct. 1.

Executives for Read-Rite now expect the company to become profitable on roughly 20 percent sequential revenue growth in the fiscal first quarter ending December. Analysts weren't expecting a profit until the third quarter.

Shares of Read-Rite rose to 8.9375 in afterhours activity on the Island electronic communications network, following the release of quarterly results. Read-Rite stock rose 0.4375 to 7.875 in Wednesday's regular trading, prior to the relesae of quarterly results.

Including a $3 million gain from a change in estimates for restructuring costs and a $29.3 million charge related to debt conversion, Read-Rite lost $42.5 million, or 66 cents per share.

Fourth quarter revenue increased 39 percent year-over-year to $146 million. GMR head shipments rose 8.3 percent sequentially to 19 million, as Read-Rite began volume shipping for 20 GB per platter drives.

"Being early on these programs and obtaining qualifications during this past quarter position us to capture additional market share and, with it, to realize profitability in the December quarter," said Alan S. Lowe, president and CEO.

The company saw lower costs and higher average selling prices in the fourth quarter.

• Read-Rite launches Scion fiber-optics biz, shares surge
• Read-Rite soars to 52-week high on contract wins>

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