Fri, Aug 03, 2012 - Page 15 News List

Sony says its Q1 net loss widened

BLEAK OUTLOOK:The consumer electronics and entertainment giant still squeezed out an operating profit, but had to lower its forecast for full-year profits

AFP, TOKYO

Sony said yesterday its fiscal first-quarter net loss widened to ¥24.6 billion (US$313.6 million) while it cut its profit forecast for the year as the struggling Japanese firm overhauls its business.

The consumer electronics and entertainment giant’s latest loss dwarfed the ¥15.5 billion shortfall it reported in the same period a year ago.

Quarterly revenue rose 1.4 percent to ¥1.51 trillion, while the company said it squeezed out an operating profit of ¥6.28 billion.

Sony also said it now expected a ¥20 billion full-year profit, down from an earlier projection of ¥30 billion for the year through March next year.

“The operating environment for Sony in the first quarter ... continued to be severe due to factors including a slowing of the global economy and entrenchment of the appreciation of the yen exchange rate,” it said in a statement.

Sony said it lowered its full-year profit forecast “in anticipation of a severe operating environment from the second quarter onward, resulting from uncertain foreign exchange rates and trends in the global economy.”

In April, Sony said it would cut about 10,000 jobs and spend almost US$1 billion on an overhaul that its new CEO Kazuo Hirai described as “urgent.”

Sony has vowed a return to the black after losing ¥456.66 billion in the year to March, its fourth consecutive annual loss.

Sony said in June it would sell its chemical products division for about ¥58 billion, while teaming up with rival Japanese electronics giant Sharp on developing televisions with advanced technology.

Despite a long-standing rivalry, the firms said they would aim to establish mass-production technology for organic light-emitting diode (OLED) television panels next year, as they try to recover from multibillion-dollar losses.

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