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Sanyo CE Group Sales Decrease 12%

Osaka, Japan — Falling sales of telephones, digital still cameras, televisions and LCD projectors — all primary product categories in the consumer group at Sanyo Electric — contributed to a 12 percent slide in group sales, down to $2.5 billion in the fiscal first quarter, from $2.8 billion in the year-ago period.

First-quarter telephone sales dropped 13 percent to $807.4 million, from $931.2 million in the same three months last year. Camera sales plummeted 26 percent in the three months, ended June 30, to $387.3 million, from $521.7 million. Television sales were about flat in the period, sliding 2 percent to $208.5 million from a year-earlier $212.6 million. LCD projectors were off 17 percent in the quarter, down to $105.5 million, from $127.7 million.

Sales of rechargeable batteries in the first quarter were off a bit over 2 percent, declining to $599.9 million from a year-earlier $614 million.

The consumer group at Sanyo, hit by falling prices and tough competition, reported first-quarter operating income of $63 million, off from the $72.6 million recorded in the previous-year period. Battery operating income in the same quarter rose to $48.8 million, from $40.8 million in the first quarter last year.

The consumer group’s A/V and information and communication business saw its sales drop 15.7 percent in the quarter, down to $1.9 billion from a year-earlier $2.3 billion. Operating income for this business dropped from $79.2 million last year, to $48.1 million in the first fiscal quarter of 2005.

Sanyo, which is in the process of a three-year restructuring plan, found falling consumer electronics, semiconductor and rechargeable battery sales precipitated an 8.6 percent drop in consolidated sales, to $5.1 billion, from $5.5 billion in the first quarter of last year.

Consolidated operating income dropped to $83.7 million in the first quarter, compared with a year-ago $121.2 million. Sanyo moved into the red in the three months, reporting a net loss of $234 million, compared with net earnings of $20.8 million a year earlier.

Overseas sales came in at $2.6 billion for the first three months, off from the $2.7 billion recorded in the same three months the prior year. Overseas sales in the consumer group decreased to $1.07 billion in the first quarter, compared with $1.10 billion last year.

The company announced large job cuts earlier in July as part of its plan to come back from recent reported losses.