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DLB > SEC Filings for DLB > Form 10-K on 15-Nov-2012All Recent SEC Filings

Show all filings for DOLBY LABORATORIES, INC.



Annual Report

The following discussion contains forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ substantially from those referred to herein due to a number of factors, including but not limited to risks described in Item 1A, "Risk Factors" and elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. We disclaim any duty to update any of the forward-looking statements to conform our prior statements to actual results.

Dolby Laboratories has been a leading solutions provider to the entertainment industry for more than 45 years. We provide products, services, and technologies to capture, distribute, and play back entertainment content that gives consumers a premium entertainment experience, regardless of how or where they choose to enjoy it. Our core strengths range from our expertise in digital signal processing and compression technology to our long history of providing products, tools, and technologies to participants in the entertainment industry at each stage in the content creation, distribution, and playback process. We provide products and services that enable content creators and distributors to produce, encode, and transmit content with our premium audio technologies, and we license decoding technologies to the manufacturers of entertainment devices to ensure that content is ultimately experienced as the creator and distributor intended. Throughout our history, we have introduced numerous innovations that have significantly improved the quality of audio entertainment, such as noise reduction for the recording and cinema industries and surround sound for cinema and home entertainment. Today, we continue to derive the vast majority of our revenue from our audio technologies.
Looking forward, we see a number of industry trends that create opportunities for the continued growth of our audio business, including the ongoing global transition from analog to digital television and consumers' increasing use of mobile devices, such as tablets and smartphones, to play back digital content. Our portfolio of technologies and solutions optimize the audio experience for portable devices to provide consumers with a rich, clear, and immersive sound, despite the bandwidth limitations of online and cellular networks and the physical limitations of devices with tiny speakers.
We also see opportunities to apply our core strengths in areas beyond audio. For example, we believe that significant improvements can be made in the technology currently used to deliver and play back premium video, and we have identified solutions that may substantially improve the video experience. Similarly, we believe we can apply our existing audio technologies to improve the clarity and quality of voice communications in areas such as multi-party teleconferencing.

Business Model
We generate the majority of our revenue by licensing technologies to original equipment manufacturers ("OEM") of consumer entertainment ("CE") products and to software vendors. We also generate revenue by selling products and related services to creators and distributors and exhibitors of entertainment content. We participate in the global entertainment industry in three important ways:
• We offer products, services, and technologies to creators and distributors of entertainment content, such as motion picture, television, and music recording studios, television broadcasters, satellite and cable operators, cinema theatre chains, and increasingly, Internet content streaming and download service providers. These content creators and distributors use our products, services, and technologies to encode and transmit content, creating rich, clear, and immersive audio experiences for consumers upon playback.

• We license technologies, such as Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, to OEMs and software vendors for incorporation into their CE and other products, so that consumers can play back audio content with our technologies in the rich, clear, and immersive manner the creators intended.

• We work directly with standards-setting organizations in the entertainment and technology industries, as well as governments and other regulatory bodies, to promote adoption of our technologies in their standards. As a result, our technologies are included in the majority of worldwide TV shipments to support digital TV standards around the world that mandate our formats. Our technologies are also included in virtually all DVD players, Blu-ray Disc players, audio/video receivers, and personal computer ("PC") DVD software players.

We license our technologies to OEMs and software vendors in 44 countries and our licensees distribute products incorporating our technologies throughout the world. We sell our products and services in over 80 countries. In fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010 revenue from outside of the U.S. was 68%, 68%, and 66% of our total revenue, respectively. Our licensing business is our most significant revenue stream, representing 86%, 83%, and 77% of our total revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and

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2010, respectively. Geographic data for our licensing revenue is based on the location of our licensees' headquarters. Product revenue is based on the destination to which we ship our products, while services revenue is based on the location where services are performed.

Opportunities, Challenges, and Risks
Our licensing and product markets are characterized by rapid technological changes, new and improved product introductions, changing customer demands, evolving industry standards, changing licensee needs, and product obsolescence. We believe that these changes present us with opportunities to provide realistic and immersive audio experiences to consumers through new and emerging delivery channels. However, as described below, our licensing revenue is subject to uncertainties and trends relating to technology and market growth, as well as the mix of CE products sold that incorporate our technologies. Our licensing business also could be affected by adverse general economic conditions, because many of the products in which our technologies are incorporated are discretionary goods. Furthermore, our products business is subject to intense competition and uncertainties relating to the transition to digital cinema and purchasing decisions by our cinema customers. We expect recent declines in our 3D revenue to continue, as the market for 3D products becomes increasingly saturated.
Licensing revenue constitutes the majority of our total revenue, representing 86%, 83%, and 77% of total revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively. The entertainment industry is in transition. As consumers are presented with more options for receiving entertainment content, competition across the delivery channels has intensified. We see this reflected in the changing composition of our licensing revenue, driven by a shift away from optical disc based products. Our optical disc based revenue is generated from the sale of technology solutions that enable DVD or Blu-ray Disc playback functionality, licensing including the Windows 7 operating system, independent PC DVD software players, DVD, and Blu-ray Disc technologies included in consumer products. However, most of these products can also receive content over mobile or online networks and we have increased our technology penetration into these other distribution channels. Non-optical disc based revenue is generated from the sale of technology solutions other than those used to enable DVD or Blu-ray Disc playback functionality. Non-optical disc based revenue includes licensing revenue derived from products such as TVs, set-top boxes, and mobile devices, as well as from the incorporation of our post processing technologies in a range of devices. We remain focused on delivering the products, tools, and technologies needed to ensure a high quality audio experience from any device.
Looking forward, we expect continued growth in the proportion of our licensing revenue we derive from non-optical disc sources. This will be driven partly by the maturity of optical disc as a method for delivering content, but also by the significant opportunities presented by digital broadcast and online and mobile distribution, as well as the inclusion of our technologies in the Windows 8 operating system to enable the playback of online content. We also see significant opportunities to offer encode/decode solutions in video and voice that leverage our expertise in signal processing, compression, and the capture and playback of content.
Our licensing revenue comes from the following markets and primarily from the inclusion of our technologies in the products indicated for each market:
• Broadcast market: primarily televisions and set-top boxes

• PC market: primarily DVD software players and Microsoft Windows operating systems

• CE market: primarily DVD and Blu-ray Disc players and recorders, audio/video receivers, and home-theater-in-a-box systems

• Other markets:

• Mobile - primarily cell phones, tablets and other mobile devices

• Gaming - primarily video game consoles

• Licensing services - primarily administration of joint licensing programs

• Automotive - primarily in-car DVD players

The growth of the Internet, and the related shift by consumers toward online entertainment content, has resulted in a global trend toward an array of online content streaming and download services. Today content is captured, delivered, and played back in more ways than ever before. Content creators and distributors are increasingly focused on delivering content across a multitude of media and devices with varying bandwidth and performance requirements, including PCs, connected TVs, set-top boxes, gaming consoles, connected Blu-ray Disc players, and a variety of mobile devices. Many of these mobile devices

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are increasingly designed to capture and distribute content through improved camera and WiFi technologies, as well as to play back rich entertainment experiences. This increasingly complex array of devices, with capability for both creating and playing back content, presents a challenge for content creators and device manufacturers seeking consistent audio quality. We believe this challenge provides an opportunity similar to that of digital broadcast, whereby we can provide solutions to optimize the audio experience across the online and portable device ecosystem.
In the area of content creation and delivery, our technologies are included in DVD, Blu-ray Disc, and certain broadcast standards, and we are working to extend our technologies to online delivery services. Online content aggregators, including Netflix, Amazon, VUDU, Apple, HBO GO, Samsung's Acetrax, and the Roxio Now platform, use our technologies to encode video and audio content. Leading music services such as Rhapsody and Omnifone use our audio encoding tools to deliver a rich music experience to their subscribers. In the second quarter of fiscal 2012, HBO adopted Dolby Digital Plus in its HBO GO content for select connected TVs. HBO will also offer Dolby Digital Plus in its HBO GO service for content delivered to Blu-ray Disc players. In addition, Samsung now offers Dolby Digital Plus surround sound audio through the Acetrax Video on Demand application.
Our broadcast market, driven by demand for our technologies in televisions and set-top boxes, represented approximately 34%, 31%, and 27% of our licensing revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively. Dolby technology was included in a higher percentage of televisions and set-top boxes in fiscal 2012 which drove increased revenue relative to fiscal 2011. We view the broadcast market as an area for potential continued growth, primarily in geographic markets outside of the U.S. We see opportunities in working with specific operators and standards bodies across emerging markets to adopt our multichannel formats. Given, the percentage of the world's population that lives in countries in emerging markets and the number of televisions and set-top boxes sold in such markets, we believe that these markets present significant opportunities for growth. While there is no guarantee that the counties in the emerging markets will convert to digital television, we intend to ensure that we are well positioned to benefit from such transition if it occurs. We also view broadcast services, such as terrestrial broadcast or IPTV services, which operate under bandwidth constraints, as another area of opportunity for Dolby Digital Plus. These technologies enable the delivery of high quality audio content at reduced bit rates, thereby conserving bandwidth. We may not, however, be able to extend our current success in the broadcast market to these new opportunities. Our PC market represented approximately 28%, 30%, and 36% of our licensing revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively. Our technologies are incorporated in the majority of PCs sold today, primarily because of the inclusion of DVD and Blu-ray Disc playback in the majority of PCs and the inclusion of Dolby technologies in the DVD and Blu-ray Disc standards. Historically, we have licensed our technologies to a range of PC licensees, including independent software vendors ("ISV"), PC OEMs, and operating system providers. The release of new versions of major PC operating systems has often resulted in changes in the mix of our PC licensees. In 2007, Microsoft introduced its Windows Vista operating system, which included our technologies to enable DVD audio playback in two of its editions. In fiscal 2009, Microsoft released its current operating system, Windows 7, which includes our technologies within four editions. As a result, since 2007 the mix of our PC licensing revenue from operating systems has increased relative to that from OEMs and ISVs. We currently license our audio codec technologies directly to OEMs such as Apple, Toshiba, and Sony to support optical disc playback on PCs, and we license our PC Entertainment Experience ("PCEE") technologies to multiple PC OEMs through our PCEE licensing program.
In May 2012, we entered into an agreement with Microsoft under which Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 channel decoding and Dolby Digital two-channel encoding will be included in all PCs and tablets licensed to run the Windows 8 operating system. Under the arrangement, OEMs generally will be required to directly license and pay us a base royalty rate for the right to use the Dolby technologies included in Windows 8 installed on the PCs and tablets they produce for online and file-based content. OEMs will be required to pay a higher per-unit royalty for Windows 8 PCs that also include optical disc playback functionality, which will be implemented by ISV applications. This higher rate is consistent with rates paid historically for the inclusion of Dolby disc playback software in the PC market. In the near term, we expect the majority of PCs to continue to ship with optical disc drives and to include optical disc playback functionality. We believe the Microsoft Windows 8 arrangement provides a simple and consistent way for OEMs to enable playback with our technologies of content delivered by online services and video in local files on the device. This is a different licensing arrangement than the one we have for Windows 7. The release of Windows 8 did not have a material financial impact in fiscal 2012, as Microsoft continued to license its Windows 7 operating systems with our technologies. The ultimate financial impact of these licensing arrangements for Windows 8 on our licensing revenue is uncertain and will depend on several factors, including:
• The extent and rate at which Windows 8 is adopted in the marketplace;

• The extent to which OEMs include optical disc playback in Windows 8 devices;

• The extent to which earlier versions of Microsoft operating systems, including Windows 7, continue to be licensed after the release of Windows 8;

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• Our ability to establish and extend licensing relationships directly with PC OEMs and ISVs;

• The rate at which entertainment content shifts from optical disc media to online media, thus reducing the need for PCs to have optical disc drives and DVD and Blu-ray Disc software players; and

• Our ability to extend the adoption of our technologies to online and mobile platforms.

In the short term, revenue from our PC market remains dependent on several factors, including underlying PC unit shipment growth and the extent to which our technologies are included in operating systems and ISV media applications. We continue to face risks relating to:
• Purchasing trends away from traditional PCs and towards portable devices without optical disc drives, such as ultrabooks and tablets, which may not include our technologies;

• The prevalence of PC software that includes our technologies on an unauthorized and infringing basis, for which we receive no royalty payments; and

• Continued decreasing inclusion of ISV media applications by PC OEMs in their Windows 7-based PCs, as Windows 7 already incorporates DVD playback software.

Our CE market, driven primarily by revenue attributable to sales of DVD and Blu-ray Disc players and recorders, represented approximately 18%, 21%, and 22% of licensing revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively. Blu-ray Disc players continue to represent an important source of revenue within our CE market, as these players are required by the applicable standards of the Blu-ray Disc Association to include Dolby Digital technology for primary audio content and our Dolby Digital Plus technology for secondary audio content. In addition, our Dolby TrueHD technology is an optional audio standard for Blu-ray Disc. Sales of DVD players are declining, as a result of the maturity of the DVD platform and a shift to Blu-ray Disc players and other connected devices capable of delivering content; however, our revenue from sales of Blu-ray Disc players is also decreasing and has not offset the decline in revenue from DVD. Revenue generated from our other markets includes revenue attributable to mobile, gaming, licensing services, and automotive, and represented approximately 20%, 18%, and 15% of licensing revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively. Mobile revenue is primarily driven by demand for the Dolby Digital Plus, AAC, Dolby Mobile, and Dolby Digital. We view the mobile device market as an area of opportunity for us to increase revenue; however, actual results may differ from our expectations. In addition, because the mobile device market is a relatively new market for us, our growth in this market is dependent not only on the anticipated growth of the mobile device market as a whole, but also on the success of the mobile devices incorporating our technologies. Revenue attributable to gaming and automotive is primarily driven by sales of video game consoles and in-car entertainment systems, respectively, that incorporate our Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, AAC, and Dolby TrueHD technologies. Licensing services revenue, from administration of joint licensing programs, is primarily driven by demand for standards-based audio compression technologies for broadcast, PC, CE, and mobile products. Consumer entertainment products throughout the world incorporate our technologies. We expect that sales of such products incorporating our technologies in emerging economies such as Brazil, China, India, and Russia, will increase in the future as consumers in these markets acquire more disposable income with which to purchase entertainment products. However, events in these economies or in the world economy in general may contradict these expectations. Moreover, we expect that OEMs in lower-cost manufacturing countries, including China, will increase production in response to this demand and that traditional OEMs will continue to shift their manufacturing operations to these lower-cost manufacturing countries. There are substantial risks associated with doing business in such countries, including OEMs failing to report or underreporting shipments of products incorporating our technologies, that have affected and will continue to affect our operating results. Revenue from Microsoft represented approximately 14%, 13%, and 12% of our total revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively, and included licensing revenue from our PC, CE, and other markets. Products
Products revenue is driven primarily by sales of equipment to cinema operators and broadcasters and represented 11%, 14%, and 20% of our total revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively.
Our cinema products represented approximately 87%, 87%, and 90% of total products revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively. Sales of our cinema products tend to fluctuate based on the underlying trends in the cinema industry, including the popularity of individual movies, as cinema owners often purchase equipment to meet expected box office demand.
The cinema industry is transitioning from traditional film to digital cinema, and we estimate that the industry is more than halfway through this transition. Digital cinema offers motion picture studios a means to save costs in printing and distributing movies, combat piracy, and enable repeated movie playback without degradation in image and audio quality. Our cinema

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products include our Dolby Digital Cinema screen server and central library server, for the storage and playback of digital content, and our digital audio processor, which provides audio control for our digital cinema servers. We expect that most cinema owners who are either constructing new theaters or upgrading existing theaters will choose digital cinema products over traditional film cinema products. However, our competitive position in the digital cinema market is not as strong as our position in the traditional film cinema market. For example, digital cinema specifications are based on open standards which, unlike traditional cinema standards, do not include our proprietary audio technologies. Furthermore, we are facing more pricing and other competitive pressures for our digital cinema products than we experience for our traditional film cinema products.
Digital cinema standards are defined by the Digital Cinema Initiative ("DCI") specifications, and we have developed software for our currently available digital cinema server that is DCI compliant. This software was made commercially available during fiscal 2012. We do not have significant contractual provisions arising from the sale of products relating to DCI compliance that would require additional performance from us.
Our digital 3D products provide 3D image capabilities when combined with a digital cinema projector and server. Our cinema products revenue has been negatively impacted by declines in unit shipments and lower selling prices for 3D products, as the market for 3D cinema equipment has become increasingly competitive. We also believe the decrease in revenue from our 3D products reflects the increasing saturation of 3D enabled screens within the cinema industry.
Our traditional film cinema products are used primarily to read, decode, and play back film soundtracks, to calibrate cinema sound systems, and to enable soundtracks encoded in digital audio formats to be played back on analog cinema audio systems. As investment by the cinema industry in digital cinema has increased, revenue from our traditional film cinema products has declined, and we expect this decline to continue.
Our broadcast products represented approximately 10%, 10%, and 9% of products revenue in fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010, respectively. Our broadcast products are used to encode, transmit, and decode multiple channels of high quality audio content for DTV and HDTV program production and broadcast distribution and to measure the subjective loudness of audio content within broadcast programming. In fiscal 2011, we began selling our Professional Reference Monitor product, a flat-panel video reference display for video professionals. These video professionals use the monitor for color critical tasks, such as calibrating color accuracy to professional reference standards. Our Professional Reference Monitor uses our dynamic range imaging technologies, which enhance contrast and extend brightness and dynamic range, while reducing power consumption in LED backlit LCD televisions. We did not generate significant revenue from this product in fiscal 2012.
Services revenue represented approximately 3% of total revenue in each of fiscal 2012, 2011, and 2010. The level of our services revenue is primarily tied to activity in the cinema industry, and in particular, to the number of movies being produced and distributed by studios and independent filmmakers. Several factors influence the number of movies produced in a given fiscal period, including strikes and work stoppages within the cinema industry, as well as tax incentive arrangements provided by many governments to promote local filmmaking. Services revenue is also impacted by the transition to digital cinema in some regions.
We are party to an agreement under which we obtained naming rights and related benefits with respect to the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California. Under the agreement, we made one annual payment in fiscal 2012 and will subsequently make semi-annual payments over the term, which will be recorded as marketing expenses. Our payment obligations are conditioned in part on the Academy Awardsฎ being held and broadcast from the Dolby Theatre. For additional details, see Note 10 "Commitments and Contingencies" to our consolidated financial statements. In addition to these contractual obligations, we anticipate that we will continue to incur increased marketing expenses associated with promoting our products, technologies, and brand at the Dolby Theatre.

Critical Accounting Policies and Estimates The discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations are based on our consolidated financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the U.S. ("GAAP"), and pursuant to Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") rules and regulations. GAAP and SEC rules and regulations require us to use accounting policies and make certain estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities, the disclosure of contingencies as of the date of the financial statements, and the reported amounts of revenue and expenses during a fiscal period. The SEC considers an accounting policy and estimate to be critical if it is both important to a company's financial condition and/or results of operations and requires significant judgment on the part of management in its application. On a regular basis, we evaluate our assumptions, judgment, and estimates. We have discussed the selection and

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development of the critical accounting policies and estimates with the Audit Committee of our Board of Directors. The Audit Committee has reviewed our related disclosures in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. Although we believe that our judgments and estimates are appropriate and correct, actual results may differ from these estimates.
We consider the following to be critical accounting policies and estimates because we believe they are both important to the portrayal of our financial condition and results of operations and require management judgments about matters that are uncertain. If actual results or events differ materially, our reported financial condition and results of operation for future periods could be materially affected. See our "Risk Factors" for further information on the potential risks to our future results of operations. Revenue Recognition
We enter into revenue arrangements with our customers to license technologies, . . .

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