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Yamaha Corp., a major maker of musical instruments and special semiconductor chips, said Thursday it has revised upward its group profit forecast for the 2002 business year, citing personnel-cost cuts and brisk sales of mobile phone chips.

Yamaha has increased its net profit projection to 17 billion yen from the 14 billion yen forecast May 17. Projected sales remain unchanged at 530 billion yen.

A Yamaha spokesman said the firm “received a boost from brisk sales of sound-source semiconductor chips for use in mobile phones.”

It has benefited from a chip capable of producing “polyphonic jingles comprised of up to 40 tones” that make up chords, he said.

He also attributed the upward revision to cuts in musical instrument inventories, and the relocation of instrument production plants overseas, a move that helped the firm cut its personnel costs.

For the first half through Sept. 30, Yamaha has revised upward its group net profit forecast from 6.5 billion yen to 8.5 billion yen, on projected sales of 255 billion yen, up from 250 billion yen.

Marui profit rises

Marui Co., a credit sales department store operator, said Thursday it posted a consolidated net profit of 8.41 billion yen in the February-July first half of the business year, up 34.5 percent from a year earlier.

The upswing stemmed partly from a decrease in extraordinary losses such as those related to retirement allowances and pension liabilities.

Sales were also firm despite dwindling personal spending on the domestic market, rising 1.6 percent to 270.95 billion yen.

Sales in Marui’s mainstay retail segment almost leveled off from a year earlier at 213.30 billion yen, down 0.1 percent, after the initial costs of opening a new outlet in Kanagawa Prefecture in April were absorbed.

Those in the credit services segment grew 14.8 percent to 31.99 billion yen.

In the firm’s other business segments, including building maintenance and designing interiors for shops, sales rose 5.1 percent to 47.59 billion yen.

For the full business year through Jan. 31, Marui expects to generate a group net profit of 18 billion yen and a pretax profit of 34 billion yen on sales of 561 billion yen.

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