Sony net loss soars to ¥50 billion


Amid the lingering global economic slump, Sony Corp. reported Friday a ¥49.97 billion group net loss for the first half that ended Sept. 30, against a ¥70.23 billion group net profit posted a year earlier.

While the yen’s strength against major currencies ate into the company’s profits, the economic downturn and harsh global competition hurt sales of its main products, the country’s largest exporter said.

“The stronger yen is the major reason for the lower profits” in the latest financial quarter, Nobuyuki Oneda, Sony’s chief financial officer, told reporters in Tokyo.

The higher yen resulted in a ¥390 billion cut in first-half sales and a ¥145 billion reduction in operating profits. The earnings are based on ¥94 against the dollar and ¥132 against the euro, compared with ¥105 and ¥161 a year earlier, Sony said.

Sony’s group operating loss came in at ¥58.29 billion in the April-September period, compared with a ¥84.49 billion profit for the same period last year. Group sales dropped to ¥3.26 trillion from ¥4.05 trillion.

However, Sony said the situation is improving.

It said its forecast for the full year to March 31 will halve to a group operating loss of ¥60 billion and a net loss of ¥70 billion, compared with a group operating loss of ¥110 billion and a net loss of ¥140 billion it initially announced on July 30.

Toshiba posts profit

Kyodo News

Toshiba Corp. said Friday it logged a group operating profit of ¥2.69 billion in the April to September first half of fiscal 2009, a turnaround from a year-earlier loss of ¥18.49 billion, helped by cost-cutting measures for electronic devices and other operations.

But Toshiba incurred a group net loss of ¥57.71 billion for the six-month period, larger than a year-earlier loss of ¥38.45 billion, on sales of ¥2.96 trillion, down 15.4 percent, in the face of the economic slump and a stronger yen.

The company said the group operating profit was its first in three half-year periods.

Its semiconductor operations returned to profitability at the operating level in the first half thanks to increased sales of NAND-type flash memory chips.

During the July-September quarter, the Tokyo-based firm said its semiconductor operations secured an operating profit of ¥5.2 billion, a reversal from a year-earlier loss of ¥29.3 billion.