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Matsushita’s CE Sales Up 4%

Osaka, Japan — Strong sales of plasma TVs, digital cameras and digital audio/video products in general boosted sales in Matsushita Electric Industrial’s AVC Networks division by 4 percent to $7.63 billion during its fiscal first quarter, ended June 30.

Matsushita, whose leading brand is Panasonic, reported that A/V products as a group had a sales increase of 14 percent. But sales of information and communications equipment in AVC Networks decreased 3 percent during the quarter, mainly as a result of a substantial sales decline of mobile phones in Japan and overseas, although there were sales gains in PCs and automotive electronics equipment.

AVC Network’s segment profit for the quarter was $304 million, up a healthy 23 percent over the same quarter last year.

Consolidated group sales for Matsushita during the quarter increased 4 percent to $18.58 billion, and overseas sales were up 9 percent to $9.35 billion, again with flat-panel TVs getting most of the credit.

Net income increased 7 percent during the quarter to $312 million, while operating profit was up a whopping 41 percent to $566 vs. the previous year’s first quarter.

The company commented that “despite intensified global price competition and rising raw materials prices, increased sales, comprehensive cost reduction efforts and other positive factors boosted operating profit.”