Archive More Than Doubles Earnings : Profits: The 125% increase for quarter spurs optimism after a slowdown and 800 layoffs in 1990-91. The company lost $49.3 million in its last fiscal year.

TIMES STAFF WRITER

On the financial mend after posting huge losses last year, computer products manufacturer Archive Corp. said its earnings for the second quarter more than doubled from the like period a year ago.

Archive also said it is considering issuing 5 million common shares in stock to reduce debt and repurchase stock from its major lender. Archive stock closed at $8.50 a share, down $1, in over-the-counter trading on Thursday. At that price, the offering would raise about $42.5 million for the company.

The company reported net income of $2.4 million, or 16 cents a share, for its fiscal second quarter ended April 3, up 125% from $1 million, or 8 cents a share, a year earlier.

"The trend for improvement is there," said Ian Gilson, analyst at L.H. Friend, Weinress & Frankson, an Irvine investment bank. "Revenues were better than I expected, though profits were lower because of the larger shipments of new products that initially will have lower profit margins."

Archive lost $49.3 million for its fiscal year ended in November. The company, which was burdened by acquisition-related debt and a slowdown in orders because of the recession, reduced its work force by more than 800 people in 1990 and 1991.

Revenue was $98.5 million, up 6% from $93.4 million a year earlier. The company attributed the sales gain to greater demand for the company's entire product line, including some new products. Archive manufactures equipment used to back up data stored in computers to prevent accidental loss. However, the fiscal 1992 second quarter spanned 14 weeks, whereas the year-ago period covered 13 weeks.

"For several quarters we have been dedicated to an active program of introducing new products, lowering costs, broadening distribution and strengthening the company's balance sheet," said D. Howard Lewis, chief executive.

For the six months ended April 3, the company reported earnings of $3.2 million, up 71% from $1.9 million a year earlier. Earnings per share for the six months were 23 cents, up from 14 cents a year earlier.

Revenue for the six-month period rose 2.6% to $184.2 million from $179.5 million a year earlier.

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