• Kyodo

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Sony Corp. on Tuesday raised its group net and operating profit outlooks for the current business year through March, citing robust demand for image sensors used in portable devices such as smartphone cameras.

The electronics and entertainment giant now expects a net profit of ¥590 billion ($5.42 billion), up ¥50 billion from the previous estimate, and operating profit of ¥880 billion, revised upward by ¥40 billion.

It also raised its sales projection to ¥8.50 trillion from ¥8.40 trillion.

For the nine months through December, Sony said its net profit fell 31.2 percent to ¥569.55 billion and its operating profit decreased 0.2 percent to ¥810.01 billion. Its sales slipped 0.4 percent to ¥6.51 trillion.

In revising upward the guidance for net and operating profits, Sony said demand for image sensors is strong enough to more than offset declines in sales of game software, TVs and digital cameras.

Sony is the world’s largest maker of image sensors, holding about a 50 percent share of the global market. The company expects demand for the electronic components to continue growing as they are used in a wide range of products, including smartphone cameras and self-driving vehicles.

The company also said it raised its operating profit outlook due to gains related to the sale of a portion of shares of its group real estate firm SRE Holdings Corp. when it went public last year.

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