Hypertec braves parent company woes

Hypertec braves parent company woes

Memory vendor Hypertec is facing an uncertain time following a suspension of payments order from Danish parent company Memory Card Technology (MCT) which acquired the company in 1999.

But the suspension will not affect Hypertec's trading in any way and it is "business as usual" for the subsidiary, according to Andy Molnar, Hypertec Australia managing director.

"There is no restriction of trading at all," Molnar said. "For us, it is business as usual."

This week, MCT applied to the Bankruptcy Court for a suspension of payments while it rebuilds its capital base. The move follows the resignation of company CEO John Trolle and a substantial lowering of expectations for turnover and profit for the last financial year.

However, the company will maintain operations during the suspension and its subsidiaries, including Hypertec in Australia, will continue to operate on a normal basis.

The problems were caused by the crash of the DRAM market and ongoing currency exchange problems against a strong US dollar, Molnar said.

"The company became stuck because it had a lot of stock when DRAM pricing dropped. At the same time it was hit by exchange rate fluctuations. It was a double whammy because DRAM is bought in US dollars," he said.

"The suspension of payments is time out for the company, allowing it to regroup and find potential opportunities."

Molnar explained finding those opportunities involved a two-pronged strategy. The first is to secure new investors in MCT. The second is to seek out new partners in the form of a merger or buyer for the company.

"That isn't necessarily a bad thing," he admonished. "In the middle of last year, MCT was looking to list on the NASDAQ. DRAM pricing and the exchange rate have hurt us but that doesn't mean the company is not sound."

Until then, the business remains strong. Since Hypertec was bought out by MCT 15 months ago, the subsidiary has shown worldwide growth of between 30 and 35 per cent, depending on the region. It has a customer base of around 700 in Southeast Asia.

Hypertec will continue to service and support its customer base, and meet its commitments to supplier partners as per normal trading terms, Molnar said.

Photograph: Hypertec Australia MD Andy Molnar.

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