At the Annual General Meeting of Imagination Technologies Group plc today, Chairman Geoff Shingles will make the following comments to shareholders:
During the last year our technology licensing business has begun to demonstrate real strength, achieving volume and royalty growth across a number of markets. Following on from the quadrupling of royalty volumes last financial year to 11.9m units, which was accompanied by a significant increase in royalty revenues, we expect to see chip volumes continue to increase markedly in the current financial year as more partner chips get into volume production and also as the existing devices ramp up.
With our graphics and video technologies already deployed in over 30 handsets, the success we have seen with mobile handset shipments in Asia is now being followed with the first shipments of phones in the USA and Europe, from manufacturers including Sony Ericsson. We expect this to be complemented by further growth in the digital radio/audio and advanced car navigation/information markets, where we have already achieved market leading positions, as well as in the Mobile TV handset and LCD TV markets, where partner shipments have recently commenced.
We have now shipped PowerVR SGX IP to lead licensing partners, enabling Intel, Renesas and NEC to begin integration of the core into their future chips. We are also seeing an increasing number of new and existing partners seriously evaluating this technology, with a number of negotiations already underway. There has also been a significant increase in the number of licensing prospects for our Mobile TV technologies. This is driven by both acknowledgement of the importance of this market by more companies and the realisation that multi-standard support, which our technology efficiently provides, is highly desirable and becoming essential for this emerging market. We therefore expect to see further progress here.
One feature that has developed is the increasingly strategic nature of discussions with some of our existing partners who are depending on us in important areas and are looking to utilise our technologies more widely across their mainstream product lines and see us as a very key technology provider.
As market leader, our PURE Digital brand continues to make real progress in the digital radio and digital audio market. Revenues to date in this financial year for our PURE business are markedly ahead compared to the same period last year due to extensive ranging with leading retailers and strong new product offerings in the higher-end and mainstream digital radio segments. As a result we expect another strong year ahead for PURE.
Whilst the timing of licensing deals is difficult to predict accurately, in the light of the above developments in our technology and consumer business we expect to see good progress in the current financial year.