HTC shares soar after Vive price cut

Taipei-Shares of Taiwan-based smartphone vendor HTC Corp. (???) jumped Tuesday after the company marked down its first virtual reality headset -- the HTC Vive -- by 25 percent, dealers said.

Buying began soon after the local equity market opened as many investors chased the stock, hoping that the price cut would encourage higher sales of the gadget, dealers said.

At the close, HTC shares finished 9.09 percent higher at NT$67.20 (US$2.22) with 25.66 million shares changing hands on the Taiwan Stock Exchange, where the weighted index ended down 0.64 percent at 10,392.07.

"HTC's gains came largely from bargain hunting, as the stock had been hammered by its poor bottom line," Hua Nan Securities analyst Kevin Su said. "The price cut of the Vive simply served as a catalyst to the bargain hunting."

At a news conference Monday, HTC announced a price cut of about 25 percent for the Vive, putting it at US$599 in the U.S. market.

In Taiwan, the price has been cut 22.27 percent to NT$21,988, while in China it has been slashed 20.32 percent to 5,488 Chinese yuan.

At the press conference, HTC VR new technology division vice president Raymond Pao (???) said the best sales of the Vive have been in the U.S. market where the number of gamers is on the rise and VR headsets are becoming more popular.

He said the Vive has also been selling well in Taiwan, China and United Kingdom, but he did not give any sales figures.

Meanwhile, Su said that despite the strong showing by HTC's shares Tuesday, there are concerns about the company's weak bottom line.

"The company is still facing stiff competition globally in both the high-end and mid-to-low range markets," he said.

Earlier this month, HTC reported a net loss of NT$1.95 billion for the period April to June, recoding its ninth consecutive quarterly loss. However, the figure was smaller than the NT$2.03 billion in net loss recorded in the first quarter. Su said investors will now be waiting for real sales numbers for the Vive to see whether the price cut is effective.

"Until a sales boost is confirmed, I think HTC's share price gains will be limited as they are just technical in nature," Su said.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel