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Earnings roundup: Kulicke & Soffa, Entrust, Efficient Networks

Chip equipment maker Kulicke & Soffa (Nasdaq: KLIC) handily beat Wall Street estimates Tuesday with first quarter earnings of 52 cents a share.

Kulicke & Soffa reported first quarter sales of $179.8 million, up 17 percent from the fourth quarter and up 194 percent compared to a year ago.

The company also reported earnings of $12.8 million, or 52 cents a share. The results reversed a loss of $8.9 million, or 38 cents a share, a year ago.

Kulicke & Soffa said it booked $207 million in new orders, up 31 percent from $158 million for the fourth quarter. Kulicke & Soffa's good news isn't unexpected for anyone watching the chip equipment sector. KLA Tencor (Nasdaq: KLAC) and Applied Materials (Nasdaq: AMAT) topped estimates recently and Novellus (Nasdaq: NVLS) preannounced a strong quarter. Applied Materials also announced plans to buy Etec Systems (Nasdaq: ETEC) last week.

Among other earnings Tuesday morning:

  • Entrust Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq: ENTU) reported a fourth quarter profit of $2.7 million, or 5 cents a share, on sales of $26 million. The results were a penny ahead of consensus estimates.

    Sales were up 73 percent from a year ago, said the provider of e-business software and services. License revenue was $19.4 million with maintenance and services accounting for the remainder of sales.

    For the year, Entrust reported net income of $5.9 million, or 11 cents a share, on sales of $85.2 million. The company said it plans to file for a secondary offering in the first quarter. In the offering, Entrust will sell 2 million shares and Nortel Networks (NYSE: NT), Entrust's largest shareholder, will sell 6 million shares.

  • Efficient Networks, Inc. (Nasdaq: EFNT), which makes digital subscriber line equipment, missed estimates for its second quarter, but showed strong sales growth.

    The company reported an operating loss of 14 cents a share and consensus called for a loss of 13 cents a share. Revenue was strong in the December quarter at $26.4 million, compared to $12.2 million in the September quarter.

    Efficient Networks recently completed the purchase of FlowPoint Corp. from Cabletron (NYSE: CS). FlowPoint contributed about $3 million to sales.

    Including charges related to acquisitions and stock options, Efficient reported a loss of 47 cents a share.