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NYSEBHE
Benchmark Electronics Reports Fourth Quarter Earnings; Quarterly Revenues Up 45% and Net Income Up 525% From a Year Ago
PRNewswire
ANGLETON, Texas

Benchmark Electronics, Inc. announced record sales revenue of $490 million for the quarter ended December 31, 2000 -- an increase of 45% from $339 million in the same period a year earlier. Net income was $8.1 million for the quarter, a 525% increase over net income of $1.3 million in the same quarter of 1999. Cash EPS on a fully diluted basis were 52 cents per share for the quarter ended December 31, 2000, compared to 22 cents per share for the same quarter in the year earlier.

Revenue for the year ending December 31, 2000 increased 94% to $1.7 billion from $878 million for the year earlier. Net income increased 66% to $19.9 million for the year ending December 31, 2000 from $12.0 million for the prior year. Cash EPS increased 43% to $1.54 per diluted share outstanding compared with $1.08 per share in the prior year.

Donald E. Nigbor, president and CEO of Benchmark Electronics, Inc. commented: "The last twelve months have been quite challenging and rewarding. We have successfully partnered with our customers to expand the level and scope of their outsourcing efforts. This has occurred during a difficult component market and, more recently, the technology sector slowdown. In support of the expanded relationships, we have established two additional System Integration facilities in Singapore and Huntsville. These new sites, combined with our existing Dublin system integration facility, are expected to generate over $300 million in incremental revenues from our recently announced computer and test and instrumentation programs added during 2000."

  Sequential Quarterly Financial Trend Highlights
  --  Fourth quarter revenue grew by 7.0% over the prior quarter.
  --  Gross margin increased from 7.4% to 7.5%.
  --  Net income was $8.1 million, a 30% increase from $6.2 million.
  --  Cash earnings per share for the quarter increased to $0.52 from $0.42.
  --  Accounts receivables increased by $21 million to $278 million in the
      fourth quarter as compared to $257 million in the third quarter.
      Calculated DSO was 51 days.
  --  Inventories increased by $29 million in the quarter to $346 million as
      compared to $317 million for the third quarter.  Inventory turns were
      5.2 for the quarter.
  --  During the fourth quarter the Company wrote off against previously
      recorded reserves, approximately $4 million of uncollectible
      receivables and $11 million of worthless inventory, most of which
      arose in connection with the 1999 acquisition.  As these amounts were
      previously provided for, these fourth quarter write-offs did not have
      an income statement impact.

  Year 2001 Guidance

Going forward, our targets for this year anticipate organic revenue growth of 30 to 40 percent and net income growth of 100 to 130 percent. We see stable revenue for the first half of this year and strong growth in the second half considering the impact of the tech market slowdown resulting in more cautious customers' forecast. We anticipate our Q1 revenues and net income will be comparable with Q4 performance.

This news release contains forward-looking statements based on current expectations, forecasts and assumptions that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual outcomes and results to differ materially. These risks and uncertainties include component availability and cost, risk of price fluctuation, reliance on major customers, fluctuations in operating results, changes in technology, competition, the ability to manage rapid growth, the ability to manage integration of acquired operations, risks associated with international sales and operations, interest rate risk, environmental regulations, litigation, market risk, segment risk, the ability to retain key personnel and the ability to maintain our technological and manufacturing process expertise. For a further list and description of risks and uncertainties, see the reports filed by Benchmark with the Securities and Exchange Commission, specifically forms 8-K, 10-Q, S-3 and 10-K. Benchmark disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Benchmark Electronics, Inc. is in the business of manufacturing electronics and provides its services to original equipment manufacturers of telecommunication equipment, computers and related products for business enterprises, video/audio/entertainment products, industrial control equipment, testing and instrumentation products, personal computers and medical devices. Benchmark's global operations include 14 facilities in six countries. Benchmark's Common Stock trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol BHE.

A conference call hosted by Benchmark management will be held today at 10:00 am CST to discuss the financial results of the Company and its future outlook. This call will be broadcast via the Internet and may be accessed by logging on to our website at http://www.bench.com/. Additional information in the form of a slide presentation that summarizes and discusses the quarterly results may also be found on the website.

               Benchmark Electronics, Inc. and Subsidiaries

               Condensed Consolidated Statements of Income
              (Amounts in Thousands, Except Per Share Data)
                               (UNAUDITED)

                           Three Months Ended              Year Ended
                              December 31,                December 31,

                             2000       1999          2000         1999

  Sales                   $489,658     338,802    1,704,924       877,839
  Cost of sales            452,801     316,580    1,580,817       810,309

    Gross profit            36,857      22,222      124,107        67,530

  Selling, general and
   administrative expenses  16,235      13,207       57,871        32,477
  Amortization of goodwill   3,425       2,981       12,841         6,430

    Income from operations  17,197       6,034       53,395        28,623

  Other income (expense):
    Interest expense        (6,145)     (4,756)     (24,395)       (9,696)
    Other                     (211)        283         (570)        1,349
  Total other expense, net  (6,356)     (4,473)     (24,965)       (8,347)

    Income before income
     taxes and extraordinary
     item                   10,841       1,561       28,430        20,276

  Income tax expense         2,760         268        8,529         7,005

    Income before
     extraordinary item      8,081       1,293       19,901        13,271

  Extraordinary item --
   loss on extinguishment
   of debt                     ---         ---          ---        (1,297)

    Net income              $8,081       1,293       19,901        11,974

  Earnings per share:
    Basic                    $0.41        0.08         1.13          0.85
    Diluted                   0.40        0.08         1.06          0.80
    Cash                      0.52        0.22         1.54          1.08

  Weighted average number
   of shares outstanding:
    Basic                   19,548      16,399       17,578        14,081
    Diluted                 20,453      16,849       18,718        15,010


               Benchmark Electronics, Inc. and Subsidiaries

                   Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheet
                            December 31, 2000
              (Amounts in Thousands, Except Per Share Data)
                               (UNAUDITED)

  Assets

  Current assets:
    Cash                                           $23,541
    Accounts receivable, net                       277,620
    Inventories, net                               346,463
    Other current assets                            19,596
      Total current assets                         667,220

  Property, plant and equipment, net               136,388
  Other assets, net                                 19,148
  Goodwill, net                                    166,514

      Total assets                                $989,270

  Liabilities and Shareholders' Equity

  Current liabilities:
    Current installments of other long-term debt   $20,275
    Accounts payable                               268,358
    Other current liabilities                       33,220
      Total current liabilities                    321,853

  Revolving line of credit                          93,500
  Convertible subordinated notes                    80,200
  Other long-term debt, excluding current
   installments                                     67,094
  Other long-term liabilities                       14,678
  Shareholders' equity                             411,945

      Total liabilities and shareholders' equity  $989,270

SOURCE: Benchmark Electronics, Inc.

Contact: Gayla J. Delly, Vice President Finance of Benchmark
Electronics, Inc., 979-849-6550

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