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Sharp sales edge up 1.9% in first quarter

by Kazuaki Nagata

Staff Writer

Sharp Corp. said Friday that sales and operating profit in the first quarter rose from the same period a year ago, thanks to continued streamlining and steady sales of LCD-related products that contributed toward its recovery.

But due to special costs, including ¥14.3 billion for its withdrawal from solar cell businesses in Europe, Sharp failed to earn a net profit and logged a ¥1.7 billion net loss instead, marking four consecutive first-quarter losses.

For April-June, the electronics maker posted ¥619 billion in sales, up 1.9 percent, and ¥4.6 billion in operating profit, up 55 percent.

“The first quarter of this fiscal year went well and the mid-term management plan is going as planned,” Sharp President Kozo Takahashi said.

The LCD panel segment managed to return to the black as sales rose 6.8 percent to ¥206.9 billion on the popularity of small and midsize panels for smartphones and tablets.

Although smartphone sales failed to exceed last year’s level, TVs sold well overseas and tablet computers helped raise sales in the digital electronics segment to ¥168.6 billion, up 6.1 percent.

Meanwhile, the energy solution segment, including solar panel, struggled. Sales fell 18.1 percent and operating profit plunged 97.3 percent as demand for solar panels from households and overseas stayed weak.

For the full year, Sharp decided to leave its projection of ¥3 trillion in sales, ¥100 billion in operating profit and ¥30 billion in net profit, unchanged.