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November 1, 2016

Cognex posts 108% profit growth

Cognex makes machine-vision technology such as this hand-held terminal.

Cognex Corporation, a designer, developer and manufacturer of products incorporating machine vision technology, had its best quarter in the company’s 35-year history in terms of net income and earnings per share from continuing operations, the company announced Monday.

The Natick company posted a 108 percent increase in year-over-year net income, up from $25,822,000 in the third quarter of 2015 to $53,675,000 in the same quarter this year, or 61 cents per diluted share. The company’s revenue of $147,952,000 marks a slight increase from the second quarter and a 38 percent year-over-year increase.

Robert J. Shillman, Cognex’s chairman, said the substantial profit was due to the strong revenue and gross margin for the quarter, and a lower effective tax rate -- which was five percent in the third quarter of this year, compared to 12 percent in last year’s third quarter.

Year-over-year revenue also got a boost from large orders from the consumer electronics industry, as well as the automotive industry. Although revenue grew less than one percent between the second and third quarters, that was better than expected, since things usually slow down over the summer months, according to the company.

The company projects fourth quarter revenue will fall between $115 million and $118 million, a decline from the past two quarters, but still a year-over-year increase of 18 to 21 percent. Revenue is expected to fall due to large customer deployments in the prior quarters that aren’t expected to repeat in the fourth quarter.

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