Garmin’s marine biz delivers solid growth

CAYMAN ISLANDS — Marine navigation, communication and information products manufacturer Garmin Ltd., achieved record results during its first quarter, ended April 1, the company reported in a release earlier this week.

Garmin’s total revenue was up 67 percent, to $322.3 million from $192.7 million in first quarter 2005, and its marine segment revenue increased 21 percent, to $50.7 million in first quarter 2006.

The company said all geographic areas experienced significant growth. North American revenue was $202.7 million compared to $132.6 million, up 53 percent.

Garmin delivered 34 new products in the quarter, including many new marine products such as new offshore and inland cartography and digital fishfinders, which it says sets the stage for additional growth as the year progresses. The company also completed the purchase of its second Taiwan manufacturing facility and expects to begin production there this month

“We experienced triple digit growth in our automotive/mobile product line, which demonstrates that our products continue to be well-positioned to take advantage of the growing demand for portable navigation devices both in the U.S. and in Europe,” said Dr. Min Kao, chairman and CEO. “Solid growth in both our outdoor/fitness and marine segments has positioned us to meet or exceed our 2006 guidance for these segments.”

“We are very pleased with our financial results for the first quarter of 2006,” said Kevin Rauckman, chief financial officer of Garmin Ltd. “Outdoor/fitness and marine segments performed well, benefiting from new product introductions. Gross margin and operating margin improved in our outdoor/fitness and marine segments and declined in our automotive/mobile and aviation segments when compared with the year-ago quarter.”

Garmin anticipates revenue growth rates within its marine segment to be 10 percent in 2006 and said the expansion of Taiwan manufacturing will allow it to double production capacity within the automotive/mobile, outdoor/fitness and marine segments.

Stock Split

Garmin said its board of directors has approved a two-for-one split of the company’s Common Shares, subject to shareholder approval. If approved by the shareholders, the stock split would be affected by the subdivision of each outstanding Common Share of a par value of $0.01 each into two Common Shares of a par value of $0.005 each and a proportional amendment of the authorized share capital. A special meeting of shareholders will be convened for the purpose of considering a resolution to approve the stock split.

The board has also approved a post-stock split annual cash dividend of $0.50 per share (equivalent to a pre-stock split cash dividend of $1.00 per share) payable to shareholders of record on Dec. 1, 2006. This dividend will be paid on Dec. 15, 2006.

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