Sony Corp yesterday said its annual net profit tumbled 36.5 percent on lower revenue from games and electronics products, and warned of a tough year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
While demand for games downloads grew during the global pandemic lockdown, it was not enough to offset negatives caused by the crisis, including a slump in manufacturing, music events cancelations and movie theater shutdowns.
The electronics giant said group net profit came in at ￥582.2 billion (US$5.4 billion) for the year that ended in March, with the absence of one-off financial gains recorded the preceding year also factoring in.
Operating profit fell 5.5 percent to ￥845 billion as sales sank 4.7 percent to ￥8.3 trillion, and selloffs on financial markets also reduced the book value of Sony’s securities holdings, the group said.
Sales of electronic goods were affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, which forced factories to halt production and hit retail sales, the firm said.
Games downloads grew, but music business income was hit as the pandemic forced the cancelation of events.
While demand for image sensors was strong, production was affected, as well as sales of its image sensors for smartphones manufactured by other companies in China.
Movie revenue posted a rise thanks to some smash hits, but the outlook is murky.
“The electronics products and solutions segment was affected earliest, but we expect it to spread to other areas. It will take some more time to see a large impact in the movies segment, but we are afraid the impact could last a long time,” chief financial officer Hiroki Totoki told reporters.
Sales across Taiwan’s food and beverage sector nosedived 22.8 percent year-on-year to NT$47.9 billion (US$1.59 billion) last month, the largest decline in 20 years, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said yesterday. One of the first victims of the COVID-19 outbreak, the sector has posted double-digit annual declines in sales for three months in a row. “Restaurants ... took the biggest hit, as the strict anti-epidemic measures implemented have had a notable impact [on revenue],” Department of Statistics Director-General Wang Shu-chuan (王淑娟) told a news conference in Taipei, referring to seating schemes spacing diners further apart. “Consumers are also less willing to eat
‘PERFECT TIMING’: The updated requirement would free up 4 million more masks per day for manufacturers, which are expected to sell up to 8 million units daily The government would requisition 8 million masks daily to ensure that the nation has sufficient supplies after a ban on mask exports is lifted on Monday next week, Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) said yesterday. “We have decided to lower the requirement from 12 million units to 8 million units per day, providing them [local mask suppliers] with 4 million more masks to sell freely according to market mechanisms,” Shen told reporters after a meeting with domestic mask manufacturers. The figure was determined based on local market demand, Shen said, pointing to declining mask purchases as Taiwan gets its COVID-19
IPO MOMENTUM CLOUDED: The major questions are whether fallout from Beijing’s proposed security bill would affect the return of capital and the US’ response to the bill Risks are mounting for Hong Kong’s stock market, the world’s fourth-largest, after the biggest plunge for the benchmark gauge in five years. China’s shock decision last week to impose a law cracking down on dissent has led to a flare up of protests in the territory, sparked concern over capital outflows and increased tensions with the US. That has placed Hong Kong, and its financial markets, on the front lines of a growing clash between the world’s two largest economies. The Hang Seng Index plummeted 5.6 percent on Friday, its worst drop since July 2015, when a bubble popped in China. A
Local banks’ combined exposure to China in the first quarter dropped for the third consecutive quarter, to NT$1.62 trillion (US$53.86 billion), as they trimmed investment and loan positions amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) data showed. Their exposure fell 1 percent from the previous quarter, compared with a 4.9 percent decline to NT$1.64 trillion at the end of December last year and a dip of 2.1 percent to NT$1.73 trillion at the end of September, the data showed. “Exposure has been declining since the second quarter last year, as lenders’ clients did not need as much funding as before after