Sharp's third-quarter profit climbs to record 26 billion yen

by Taiga Uranaka

Sharp Corp. said Wednesday its net profit jumped 26 percent to a quarterly record of 26.26 billion yen for the three months through December, driven by continued strength in its liquid crystal display TV sales.

The Osaka-based firm said demand for large LCDs remains strong despite a series of expansions to production capacity at its plant in Mie Prefecture.

For the third quarter of fiscal 2005, Sharp’s revenue rose 13 percent to 731.72 billion yen, also a record. Sales of the company’s LCD TVs shot up by 49 percent to 1.22 million units.

While intense competition for flat-screen TVs continued to bring down product prices, the company was relatively immune by selling a greater number of larger and therefore pricier TV sets than a year earlier.

According to the firm, TVs 30 inches and bigger accounted for more than 40 percent of its total TV sales during the period, up from 23 percent a year earlier.

The results were also helped by a strong showing of its mobile phones in the domestic market, where it introduced handsets with high-quality displays and image sensors.

The company retained its full-year forecast of 87 billion yen in net profit on revenue of 2.75 trillion yen. For the final quarter it expects strong earnings led by LCD TV sales.