Byline: JAMES DETAR
Linear Technology Corp. got slammed by the chip industry downturn in 2001.
Sales plummeted from nearly $1 billion in the fiscal year ended June 2001 to just $512 million in fiscal 2002.
Through it all, Linear managed to stay in the black.
Now sales are starting to bounce back. Revenue in fiscal 2003, ended in June, was $607 million, up 18%. Earnings per share rose 20% to 74 cents.
Founded in 1981, Linear makes analog semiconductors -- chips that convert waves like light or sound into digital bits. The company grew swiftly in the 1990s by specializing in power chips, devices that regulate power in consumer and business electronics.
Linear weathered the industry slump by keeping a tight control on expenses. Now the company is focused on growth. But it won't …