IPG Photonics Corp. saw a 15.4 percent increase in profits last quarter over the same period last year, powered by demand for high-power fiber lasers. The company reported earnings of $40.5 million compared to $35.1 million in the first quarter of 2013. “High-power fiber laser sales increased 33 percent and medium-power, QCW and laser systems sales also were up compared with the prior year,” said CEO Dr. Valentin Gapontsev. “Geographically, we saw strong growth in Europe, China and Turkey, and achieved record sales in Japan. North American sales were lower due to lower sales for welding and paint stripping, partially offset by strong cutting sales as compared to [the first quarter of] 2013.” “Fiber laser technology continues to displace traditional laser technologies and non-laser technologies for applications such as cutting, welding, additive manufacturing and cladding,” Gapontsev added. Cutting and additive manufacturing sales grew 22 percent in the first quarter, Gapontsev said. Welding products performed well in Japan and Europe, but not as well in North America and China, he said. IPG Photonics expects revenues in the range of $173 million to $188 million for the second quarter. A large order for low-cost pulsed lasers is expected to ship to China soon, which Gapontsev said should strengthen the company’s position there. He cautioned, however, that competition for low-power pulsed lasers in China and softness in the North American market will partially offset growth in the next quarter.