Sony CE Revenue, Profit Climbs In 3rd Quarter

By Jeff Malester On Jan 30 2006 - 8:00am

Third-quarter sales in Sony's electronics division increased 4.7 percent, as the company enjoyed increased sales of LCD televisions, rear-projection TVs and flash-memory and hard-drive-based Walkman digital audio players.

Rising sales in Sony's electronics business sent operating income soaring in the three months, ended Dec. 31, climbing 56.2 percent to $668 million, up from a year-ago $438.8 million. The company attributed the gain to an improvement in the cost of sales ratio associated with enhanced product appeal and cost reductions, as well as favorable foreign exchange rates.

Sony's game business notched a 48.3 percent rise in third-quarter sales, coming in at $3.6 billion, compared with a year-earlier $2.5 billion. The jump primarily was due to demand for the PlayStation portable and PlayStation2. Operating income in the game segment for the three months rose 52.1 percent, reaching $575 million, up from $387.5 million in the same quarter in 2004.

Television sales led the third-quarter gain in the consumer electronics business, pulling down a 16.7 percent gain to $3 billion, from $2.7 billion in the same period a year ago. Sales of audio were flat, at $1.6 billion, in the third quarter, compared with a year ago, while video sales in the period dropped 5.4 percent to $2.7 billion, from $2.9 billion in the third quarter of 2004.

Sony sales in the United States increased 14.4 percent in the third quarter, hitting $5.6 billion, up from a year-ago $5 billion.

Sony, which has been battling to restore profits in the face of fierce competition from lower-cost producers in Asia, reported a 10.2 percent jump in consolidated third-quarter sales, coming in at $20.1 billion, up from $18.7 billion in the same three months in 2004.

Helped by a recovery in its core CE business, Sony recorded a 46.8 percent rise in consolidated operating income, to $1.7 billion from a year-earlier $1.2 billion. Net income climbed 17.5 percent in the third quarter, hitting $1.4 billion, up from $1.2 billion year-over-year. The company reported CE segment restructuring charges of $124 million in the third quarter, compared with $91.2 million in the same quarter the prior year.

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