Don't tell Sigma Designs
That's a tiny bit of dramatic license, of course. Even this resilient little designer of digital media processors has seen better days. Fourth-quarter sales came in at $47.3 million with $0.24 of GAAP earnings per share. That's far worse than last year's $76.4 million and $1.12 per share.
But Sigma is clearly doing very well, nonetheless. The company remains profitable despite the recession, and there's no need to slow down the innovation that has taken Sigma this far.
It doesn't hurt to be working on very promising technologies when the market takes a dive. Just listen to the opportunities that still lie ahead of these guys:
- Tru2way cable cards haven't become the industry standard yet, but Sigma is lobbying cable companies like Comcast
(NASDAQ:CMCSA)and Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC)to make it so. Your next Sony (NYSE:SNE)big-screen may not even need a set-top box in order to get full digital cable access with every feature in the book.
- Sigma is big on Blu-ray player technology, and stands to profit immensely as Blu-ray slowly replaces the old DVD lineup.
- Sigma is also a pioneer in the just-sprouting field of ultra wideband (UWB) video transmission. Think of one media center that can wirelessly send HD video and audio to any TV in your home, such as the similar functionality already found in my Verizon
(NYSE:VZ)FiOS media center. This is far from ubiquitous today, but the times, they are a-changin'.
Rivals like Texas Instruments
In short, Sigma isn't making fat stacks of dollar bills right now, but is raking in enough to get by just fine. In the meantime, the company is hatching cunning plans of world domination that should blossom into renewed growth and torrid cash flows once this recession business is over and done with. Whenever that might be.