Schaumburg, Ill. — New cellphone products led the way at Motorola in the third quarter, with the company’s personal communications phone segment — by far its largest — posting a 34 percent gain in sales, to $3.9 billion from a year-ago $2.9 billion.
The personal communications segment recorded $390 million in operating earnings in the third quarter, ended October 2, nearly tripling the $147 million reported by Motorola in the same three months last year.
The segment shipped 23.3 million handsets, a 15 percent rise over shipments in the same quarter in 2003, while the company claimed it maintained its global market share in the third quarter vs. a year ago. Motorola said the segment began shipping 17 new handsets, with 15 featuring color displays and 11 featuring integrated cameras.
For the nine months, Motorola’s personal communications segment enjoyed a 54 percent increase in sales, rising to $11.8 billion from $7.7 billion in the same time frame a year earlier. Segment operating earnings for the nine months came in at $1.2 billion, up from a year-ago $352 million.
The company’s on-charging cellphone results boosted consolidated sales 26 percent in the third quarter, hitting $8.6 billion, up from $6.8 billion in the same three months last year. It was Motorola’s third consecutive quarter of strong sales,
Consolidated earnings more than tripled in the third quarter, reaching $479 million, compared with a year-earlier $116 million. Results for the quarter included income of $195 million from the sale of investments, and expenses of $81 million related to the retirement of debt, $67 million related to the impairment of goodwill and $55 million due to severance charges.
For the nine months, consolidated sale rose to $25.9 billion from a year-ago $19 billion, while net earnings more than doubled to $885 million from $404 million.