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Hitachi Reports Higher Revenue, Lower Profit

10/31/2006 12:35:00 PM Eastern

Tokyo – Hitachi reported higher revenues but a high double-digit dip in operating income for its fiscal first half that ended Sept. 30.

Consolidated revenues were $40.4 billion for the quarter, an 8 percent gain, but operating income was $168.0 million a 74 percent drop, the manufacturer said.

Digital media and consumer products revenue was up 24 percent during the half to $6.43 billion due to sales of plasma and other flat-panel TVs and the merging of Hitachi’s air conditioning systems and home and life solutions groups.

But the segment reported a loss of $292 million for the half, $154.2 million more than last year’s first half. The loss was reflected in increased investments for marketing flat-panel TVs and other products, as well as sluggish sales of DVD recorders, room air conditioners and other factors, Hitachi said. In revenues by market, North America sales for Hitachi were up 13 percent to $4.36 billion.

In its outlook for the remainder of the fiscal year Hitachi said that flat-panel TV and LCD profitability are a concern and measures are being made to improve in that area. Specifically the company said that with volume product at its third plasma display panel plant operated by Fujitsu Hitachi Plasma Display this month, costs should be reduced.

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