Aehr Test Systems Reports First Quarter Fiscal 2021 Financial Results and Maintains Financial Guidance for Growth and Profitability in Fiscal 2021

FREMONT, Calif., Sept. 24, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aehr Test Systems (NASDAQ: AEHR), a worldwide supplier of semiconductor test and reliability qualification equipment, today announced financial results for its first quarter of fiscal 2021 ended August 31, 2020.

Fiscal First Quarter Financial Results:

  • Net sales were $2.0 million, compared to $5.5 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2020.
  • GAAP net income was $107,000, or $0.00 per diluted share, compared to a GAAP net loss of $413,000, or $0.02 per diluted share, in the first quarter of fiscal 2020.
  • Non-GAAP net loss was $2.0 million, or $0.09 per diluted share, which excludes the impact of stock-based compensation and non-cash net gain of $2.2 million and a tax benefit of $215,000 related to the closure of Aehr’s Japan subsidiary during the quarter. This compared to a non-GAAP net loss of $214,000, or $0.01 per diluted share, in the first quarter of fiscal 2020, which excludes the impact of stock-based compensation.
  • Backlog as of August 31, 2020 was $1.2 million.

An explanation of the use of non-GAAP financial measures and a reconciliation of Aehr’s non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable GAAP financial measures can be found in the accompanying tables.

Fiscal First Quarter COVID - 19 Related Business Impacts:

  • B ookings and R evenue N egative ly I mpact ed by COVID - 19 – Fiscal first quarter bookings and revenues were negatively impacted by pushouts of forecasted customer orders and production ramp delays for FOX-P systems and consumables for silicon photonics transceivers used in data centers and 5G infrastructure, devices used in automotive applications, and sensors used in mobile devices. These customers have indicated the pushouts are temporary and that they will require the additional system capacity and consumables later in the current fiscal 2021 year.
  • New Customer Evaluations and Orders Experienc ed Delays – Travel related restrictions due to COVID-19 and overall caution in a significant number of new potential customers worldwide has delayed evaluations and initial orders for Aehr’s systems and consumable products in the first quarter.
  • Temporary Cost Reductions Implemented i n R esponse to D elays in E xpected O rders and R evenue During the quarter, Aehr implemented temporary expense reductions across the company including pay reductions of its executive staff due to customer order pushouts and delays in production ramps. These changes are expected to result in a total cost savings of over $550,000 per quarter.

Fiscal First Quarter and Recent Business Highlights:

  • Shipped and Successfully Installed Initial System for a Major New Customer in Silicon Photonics During the quarter, Aehr shipped and successfully installed a FOX-NP TM system for initial production burn-in and stabilization for a new customer who is a global leader of communication transceivers for data centers, telecom, and 5G infrastructure. This customer is forecasting to transition to Aehr’s FOX-XP wafer-level test and burn-in systems during this fiscal year to meet their volume production forecast.
  • Began Marketing and Sales Campaign with the World s Largest OSAT Supplier – During the quarter, Aehr began an initial marketing and sales campaign with the world’s largest Outsourced Semiconductor Assembly and Test (OSAT) supplier for the FOX-PTM family of products including Aehr WaferPaks TM and DiePaks® for production test, burn-in, and reliability screening of devices at full wafer, singulated die, and module level. The initial marketing and sales campaign has already resulted in multiple new customer engagements.
  • Broadened Deployment of the FOX-XP for Silicon Carbide Devices During the quarter, Aehr added multiple new device design wins and completed the initial production release of several new silicon carbide devices on its FOX-XP full wafer level test and burn-in system with its lead customer that is using the FOX-XP system for high volume production burn-in and infant mortality screening of silicon carbide devices at wafer level for electric vehicle power modules. 
  • Silicon Photonics Ramps Forecast Remains Strong Although Aehr experienced pushouts of customer forecasted orders in the first quarter for its FOX-P systems and consumables in data center and some 5G end use applications for silicon photonics transceivers, these customers have indicated the push outs are temporary and that they will require the additional system capacity and consumables later in the current fiscal 2021 year.
  • Potential upside in Mobile Sensor Segment Aehr has seen incremental applications and devices that provide upside in this segment late in fiscal 2021 and into 2022 .
  • Aehr R emains Engaged with Over a Dozen New Potential Customers Aehr’s list of Tier 1 and Tier 2 customers that are considering using Aehr’s products for high market growth applications including silicon photonics and silicon carbide production burn-in continued to grow in the first quarter. 

Gayn Erickson, President and CEO of Aehr Test Systems, commented:

“While COVID-19 has created real challenges due to travel restrictions and overall caution that resulted in delays of some customer production ramps, we believe these delays are temporary and do not impact the demand for our products or the attractiveness of the key markets that we serve. We maintain our belief that we will come out of this worldwide pandemic stronger than we went in with more production customers, more applications, and higher value products. Our key customers are serving some of the highest growth markets including data centers, 5G infrastructure, sensors and technology for smartphones and tablets, electric and hybrid electric vehicles, and memory and data storage in computing, data centers, mobile devices and hundreds of applications that are keeping the world connected. As a result, we believe our products will be in high demand this year and for years to come.

“We saw our silicon photonics customers move to production with our FOX systems for the first time this past fiscal 2020, which includes our lead customer and three additional silicon photonics customers who have each told us that they expect to ramp production during Aehr’s fiscal 2021, adding capacity in both systems and consumables. During the quarter we shipped and installed a FOX-NP TM system for initial production burn-in and stabilization for a new customer in the silicon photonics space who is also forecasting to transition to our FOX-XP wafer-level test and burn-in systems during this fiscal year to meet their volume production forecast.

“We continue to see the total available opportunity for silicon carbide and silicon photonics wafer level and singulated die test markets to be approximately $250 million of needed capacity including consumables. We are currently engaged with over a dozen potential Tier 1 and Tier 2 customers for both silicon photonics and silicon carbide applications, and we expect several of these potential customers to place initial orders this fiscal year, with ramps into production later this fiscal year or in fiscal 2022. We are also seeing renewed activity and interest for our FOX systems and consumables for several new applications in the 2D and 3D sensor markets, particularly for mobile devices, and believe this could add to our currently forecasted revenue for this fiscal year and next.

“Last quarter, we completed organizational changes to move to more effective third party sales representatives in Europe and Japan, and this quarter put in place temporary expense reductions across the company in response to COVID-19 related delays in orders and impacts on revenue. Together these changes will result in total cost savings of almost $700,000 per quarter, lowering Aehr’s revenue break even by approximately $4.5 million per year.

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