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Toshiba’s Operating Profit Down

Tokyo — Toshiba reported Tuesday that group operating profits declined 25 percent in its fiscal third quarter, ended Dec. 31, to $394 million, as the company’s revenue increased 5 percent to $17.6 billion from $16.8 billion.

At the same time group net profit rose 11 percent in the quarter after a major real estate sell-off in downtown Tokyo, the company said. Net profit came to $755 million in the fiscal third quarter, up from $679 million a year earlier. The gain was largely due to a $1.2 billion special profit from the sale of a building and land in Tokyo’s Ginza district.

The Japanese electronics conglomerate attributed operating profit decline to compressed prices for its NAND chip products. Toshiba said that the company expects NAND flash prices to fall 50 percent this fiscal year.

Overall consolidated sales for the period were $48.8 million.

Not indicated were results of Toshiba’s aggressive promotion of the HD DVD format in the period, but company executives said strong sales for PCs, industrial systems and medical devices, and increased revenue from its Westinghouse U.S. nuclear power unit, should make up for losses in microchips and HD DVD in the next quarter.