Sony continues to haemorrhage red ink, posting an operating loss of 62.2 billion Yen over the last quarter. It’s an improvement of 15.2 billion Yen over the same period last year, but shows the Corporation has a long road to travel back to financial good health. This is the fifth year of fiscal losses in a row.
Sony’s net income dropped 24.5 per cent from the prior year to 123.6 billion Yen. Sales rose 4.4 per cent to 7.48 trillion Yen. Sony’s total earning were bruised by the purchase of MGM, the iffy performance of the company’s Summer movie slate (Stealth, Zathura and The Legend of Zorro), and the development of the PS3.
The only real highlight amid all the financial gloom comes from the Corporation’s Electronics operation, and in particular the TV division. Chief Executive Officer of Sony Corporation, Sir Howard Stringer has vowed to return Sony to the top of the TV food chain, and the results of his 2005 restructuring plan, which saw 10,000 job losses, are begining to be seen.
LCD and SXRD projection products (pictured above) have gone down particularly well in the US and sales of BRAVIA-branded LCD TV screens are strong. This is crucial for the company, as the division accounts for nearly a fifth of all Sony revenue.
Since re-branding its TV range as BRAVIA, a name reputedly chosen by Stringer himself, Sony can now claim number one world-wide market share in LCD.
Sony’s joint venture production company with Samsung, S-LCD, has also helped it slash as much as 20 per cent off the manufacturing cost of its flatpanel TVs.
Success in screens is essential if the brand is to successfully cross pollinate other technologies, such as the Cell chip developed for the PS3.
Cell imbedded flatscreen TVs could evolve into powerful multimedia hubs able to stream multiple channels around a home network simultaneously.
Overall sales in its Electronics division increased 1.7 per cent over the previous financial year. VAIO PCs, camcorders, both DVD-based and HD, and the PSP have also performed well.