The downturn in the semiconductor industry in the early part of last year, together with pressure on pricing and falling margins saw attributable profit at QPL International Holdings almost halve from $200.4 million to $107.5 million in the first half to October. But directors said results for the final quarter of 1997 showed a significant upturn in sales leading them to be optimistic about results for the year to April and about long-term prospects for the chip industry. First-half turnover rose from $1.39 billion to $1.4 billion. Earnings per share fell from 42.7 cents to 23.5 cents. An interim dividend of four cents was declared.