Ingram Micro rebounds in Australia

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Ingram Micro rebounds in Australia
Ingram COO Paul Read

Ingram Micro Australia has fulfilled its promise of returning to profit for the fourth-quarter of 2013, after some turbulent years for the distie in the local market.

The world's biggest distributor "achieved the company's target for non-GAAP operating profitability in the 2013 fourth quarter, improving more than $12 million from the operating loss in last year's fourth quarter", according to a statement accompanying its fourth-qaurter results.

Ingram Micro Australia also grew revenues in the "low double-digits" in Q4, marking four successive quarters of growth.

Globally, Ingram's Q4 revenue grew 4 percent to $11.8 billion and its non-GAAP operating income was up 11.6 percent to $211 million.

Its full-year revenue hit $42.6 billion, up 12 percent.

[Related: Ingram predicts Aussie breakeven or profit next year

Ingram Micro Group chief financial officer Bill Humes said: "In Australia, Ingram Micro has regained the confidence of customers and vendors and we are adding new partners and product lines, all of which led to low double-digit revenue growth in the face of flat to down IT spending."

The results reflects a significant contrast to the local unit's 2012 fiscal year, in which revenue fell 14 percent to $1.2 billion, and it posted an $81.6 million loss.

However, even that downbeat result showed a turnaround in profits, up from the painful $184.5 million loss in fiscal 2011, a year that included a goodwill impairment charge of $134.2 million.

This year's upswing in profits chimes with Ingram's stated aim to put profits first.

In the group's Q4 earning call, chief operating officer Paul Read said Australia "rebounded very nicely but it has been a long journey for us".

"As we did rebound, we weren't chasing volume for volume's sake; we were trying to address the value business."

Read called Australia a "competitive, low-growth environment" – adding that Ingram is leveraging its market share to grow.

"We are seeing vendors coming back to us and we have been pretty successful in the marketplace."

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