Japanese electronics giant Sony Corp yesterday said it swung to a net loss in the fiscal first quarter on the impact of the March 11 earthquake and revised its earnings forecasts lower by 25 percent on weak TV sales and a strong yen.
Blaming the impact of the March disaster and a weaker electronics business environment, Sony said it slipped to a ￥15.5 billion US($191 million) net loss in April-June, when it suffered a major hacking attack on its online networks.
The figure compared with a ￥25.7 billion profit in the same period a year ago.
In the three-month period, Sony’s consolidated operating profit plunged 59 percent from a year ago to ￥27.5 billion on sales of ￥1.49 trillion, down 10 percent.
It lowered its net profit forecast for the fiscal year ending in March next year to ￥60 billion, from its forecast of ￥80 billion made in May, citing a stronger Japanese currency and lower projected LCD television sales in the face of sagging demand and fierce competition.
It also revised its sales forecast lower by 4 percent to ￥7.2 trillion.
Chief financial officer Masaru Kato said the TV business — a long-time laggard — suffered from economic weakness in the US and Europe, exposing the company to foreign-exchange pressures in highly competitive markets.
The impact of the March disaster was also seen in other Japanese electronics firms.
Sharp Corp also reported a net loss of ￥49.3 billion in the April-June quarter compared with a net profit of ￥10.7 billion a year earlier, while Fujitsu booked a net loss of ￥20.4 billion, a sharp drop from a net profit of ￥1.6 billion in the same period last year, because of the March disaster and a strong currency.
In addition, Panasonic reported a net loss of ￥30.4 billion for the three months, compared with a net profit of ￥43.7 billion a year earlier.
In related news, the Nikkei Shimbun yesterday reported that Panasonic was soon to announce a plan to sell subsidiary Sanyo Electric’s washing machine and refrigerator operations in Asia to China’s Haier Group (海爾).
Sanyo will sell all its shareholdings in about 10 subsidiaries and affiliates in Japan and Southeast Asia, the Nikkei daily reported.
The sale price is estimated at about ￥10 billion, the newspaper said, adding that it would be China’s first buyout of key operations from a major Japanese manufacturer.
The deal is scheduled to be completed by March next year, the Nikkei said, adding that 2,000 employees of the firms are expected to be transferred to Haier.
Panasonic declined to confirm the report.
POOR INTERNAL CONTROLS: Insurance Bureau Director-General Shih Chiung-hwa said the company is expected to get back on track while its chairman is suspended The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) yesterday fined Shin Kong Life Insurance Co (新光人壽) NT$27.6 million (US$939,415) for a reckless investment that endangered its solvency, and suspended its chairman Eugene Wu (吳東進) for poor supervision. The penalty is the second-highest in a single case after Nan Shan Life Insurance Co (南山人壽) was fined NT$30 million in September last year and its chairman Du Ying-tzyong (杜英宗) suspended for two years, the commission said. In three rounds of special and regular examinations conducted since last year, the commission found that Shin Kong Life had given too much power to an asset and liability management committee
Continental AG, which makes control units for Daimler AG cars, cannot pursue antitrust claims against a group of patent owners, including Qualcomm Inc, which are seeking royalties on telecommunications technology, a federal judge in Texas ruled. Avanci LLC, a licensing pool formed by Qualcomm, Nokia Oyj, Sharp Corp and other owners of patents on technology standards, is not breaching antitrust laws when it negotiates license agreements with automakers rather than the component makers, Barbara Lynn, chief district judge for the Northern District of Texas, said in dismissing the suit in a decision posted on Friday. The licensing group charges US$15 per vehicle
Sony Corp has cut its estimated Play Station 5 (PS5) production for this fiscal year by 4 million units, down to about 11 million, following production issues with its custom-designed system-on-chip (SOC) for the new console, people familiar with the matter said. The Tokyo-based electronics giant in July boosted orders with suppliers in anticipation of heightened demand for gaming in the holiday season and beyond, as people spend more time at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the company has come up against manufacturing issues, such as production yields as low as 50 percent for its SOC, which have cut into
HEAVY INVESTMENT: Moody’s affirmed the firm’s ‘Aa3’ rating with a ‘stable’ outlook due to its leading position in the industry and ability to match customer requirements Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (TSMC, 台積電) revenue this year is expected to increase about 21 percent to NT$1.29 trillion (US$44.01 billion) from NT$1.07 trillion last year, driven by strong demand for advanced 5-nanometer and 7-nanometer chips mainly used in smartphones and high-performance computing devices, a Moody’s Investors Service report on Wednesday said. TSMC’s rate of revenue growth next year is to increase to 7.5 percent, the ratings agency said. The company, which supplies 5-nanometer chips for Apple Inc’s new iPad series, has introduced the advanced chips ahead of its competitors and gained a significant share of the market for the foundry industry’s