April 20, 2024

Sony Forecasts $975 Million Profit for Year

TOKYO — Sony forecast on Thursday that it would post a net profit of 80 billion yen, or $975 million, for the business year that started on April 1.

That compares with analysts’ consensus of 105 billion yen, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine SmartEstimates, which places more weight on recent forecasts by top-rated analysts.

The electronics and entertainment company also said it expected to make an operating profit of 200 billion yen this business year, roughly the same as last year’s level and in line with guidance given earlier in the week.

On Monday, Sony revised its net profit estimate of 70 billion yen for the last fiscal year to a 260 billion yen loss, saying the impact of the March 11 earthquake had clouded near-term prospects in the local market, forcing it to take a charge on tax credits.

The company predicted on Thursday that it will sell 15 million of its flagship PlayStation 3 game consoles in the current business year compared with 14.3 million in the year that ended on March 31. Sony also reiterated its plan to release a next-generation portable games device by the end of 2011.

It forecast liquid crystal TV sales of 27 million units this fiscal year, compared with 22.4 million sets in the previous year, but declined to say whether it expected the unit to be profitable.

Sony is reeling from one of the biggest ever Internet security breaches, which forced it to close its PlayStation video game network for nearly a month after data on tens of millions of user accounts was leaked.

Hacking attacks exposed more than 100 million accounts on its online gaming network to possible data theft. On Tuesday, Sony said additional Web sites in four countries had also been hacked. Among the break-ins, personal information for 8,500 people was leaked from its Greek Sony Music Entertainment Web site.

Sony said on Monday that it estimated that the hacking and damage caused by the earthquake would drag down operating profit by 164 billion yen in the current financial year.

Shares in Sony closed 0.1 percent higher at 2,238 yen on Thursday before the earnings announcement, compared with a 1.5 percent gain in the benchmark Nikkei 225 average.

Article source: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/27/business/global/27iht-sony27.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

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