* Expects 1st-qtr revenue of $305 mln vs est. $277 mln
* Expects 1st-qtr adj. profit $0.17/shr vs est. $0.11
* Shares rise 7.5 pct after the bell
(Adds details, CEO comments, background; updates shares)
By Aurindom Mukherjee
April 29 RF Micro Devices Inc, a maker
of chips that connect mobile devices to networks, forecast
quarterly revenue above analysts' estimates and said it expected
rising smartphone sales to fuel growth in the second half of the
Shares of RF Micro, whose customers include Apple Inc
and Samsung Electronics Co, rose about 7.5
percent in extended trading after the chipmaker also posted a
better-than-expected profit for the fourth quarter.
"In terms of timing, we are beginning to support the volume
ramps of many of this year's most popular devices and we expect
this to accelerate into the September quarter," RF Micro Chief
Executive Robert Bruggeworth said on a post-earnings call.
Apple is expected to launch the next version of its iPhone
in September, the month in which the company usually introduces
the latest versions of its products.
RF Micro is also positioned to benefit from the "Internet of
Things", Bruggeworth said, referring to machine-to-machine
connectivity that allows devices on both wired and wireless
networks to interact.
There is also speculation that Apple will launch wearable
devices such as smartwatches, after Chief Executive Tim Cook
spoke about "new product categories" for 2014.
Increasing demand for internet connectivity and social media
while on the move is driving sales of mobile devices, which use
more radio frequency chips than basic phones.
Smartphone users globally are expected to triple to 5.6
billion by 2019 from 2013, according to a report by network
equipment maker Ericsson. (r.reuters.com/byd27v)
RF Micro said in February that it would buy rival Triquint
Semiconductor Inc for about $1.6 billion to boost its
offering in both phone and wireless network markets. The deal is
expected to close in the second half.
RF Micro, whose radio frequency chips are also used in
notebooks and tablets as well as radar equipment, forecast
adjusted earnings of about 17 cents per share and revenue of
$305 million for the first quarter ending June.
Analysts on average were expecting earnings of 11 cents per
share on revenue of $277 million, according to Thomson Reuters
RF Micro's net loss narrowed to $1 million, or break even
per share, in the fourth quarter ended March 29 from $16
million, or 6 cents per share, a year earlier.
The company, which counts Samsung as its biggest customer,
earned 12 cents per share, excluding items.
Revenue fell 8.8 percent to $256 million.
Analysts on average had expected a profit of 9 cents per
share on revenue of $255.5 million.
Greensboro, North Carolina-based RF Micro's shares closed at
$8.09 on the Nasdaq on Tuesday.
(Additional reporting by Supantha Mukherjee in Bangalore;
Editing by Kirti Pandey)