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Motorola Earnings, Sales Jump

Schaumburg, Ill. — Booming business in RAZR mobile phones helped Motorola post an 18 percent increase in consolidated sales during the fourth quarter, hitting $10.4 billion, up from a year-ago $8.8 billion.

Consolidated net earnings during the three months, ended Dec. 31, nearly doubled, reaching $1.2 billion, an 86 percent increase over the $647 million recorded in the fourth quarter of 2004.

Sales in the company’s mobile devices segment soared 30 percent during the year’s final three months, coming in at $6.5 billion, up from $5 billion in the same period a year earlier. Operating earnings for this business were $663 million in the fourth quarter, compared with $532 million year-on-year.

During the quarter, Motorola said it shipped 44.7 million handsets, an increase of 40 percent year-on-year. The company said its worldwide market share was 19 percent, and that it had introduced 26 new handsets in the fourth quarter, several of which were variations of the RAZR.

Motorola said: Sales, earnings and market share were up once again as a result of “must have” products that combine innovative style, leading technology and quality, while enabling “must do” experiences such as mobile video and mobile music.

For the 12 months, the company’s mobile devices business climbed 25 percent, hitting $21.5 billion, up from $17.1 billion the previous year. Segment operating earnings over this time period rose to $2.2 billion, from a year-earlier $1.7 billion. Mobile devices shipments totaled 146 million units for the 12 months, a 40 percent rise over 2004.

Consolidated annual sales also jumped 18 percent, reaching $36.8 billion, compared with $31.3 billion a year ago. Net earnings climbed to $4.6 billion for the year, up from $1.5 billion in 2004.