Samsung Electronics Earnings Smash Industry Records

      January 09, 2013 11:59

      Samsung Electronics' sales last year reached a staggering W200 trillion with operating profit of W29 trillion (US$1=W1,063). That was the largest annual sales of any company in the global IT industry.

      Announcing preliminary fourth-quarter earnings on Monday, Samsung said quarterly sales amounted to W56 trillion and operating profit to W8.8 trillion. Operating profit from October to December was up 10 percent compared to the third quarter's W8.06 trillion.

      Overall sales last year amounted to W201.05 trillion and operating profit totaled W29.01 trillion, both new records. The previous sales record was W165 trillion in 2011, and the record operating profit W17.3 trillion in 2010.

      The results are preliminary figures and Samsung did not reveal the performances of each division. Analysts estimate 70 percent of Samsung's fourth-quarter operating profit came from smartphones. The Galaxy Note 2 phone, which was unveiled in September, sold over five million units around the world in the first two months and played a major role in the stellar earnings.

      The semiconductor and display divisions are estimated to have posted around W1 trillion in earnings each due to explosive demand for smartphones. The TV and home appliance divisions apparently also fared well despite the global slump.

      The earnings outlook for this year is bright too, with analysts forecasting Samsung will continue to dominate the smartphone market after it overwhelmed Apple and other rivals.

      "Samsung will likely attempt to achieve additional growth in the global market by releasing a new version of the Galaxy S series in the first half of this year," said Song Myung-sup at Hi Investment and Securities. "There is room for improvements in earnings in the semiconductor and display divisions, whose products go into smartphones."

      But some project the explosive increase in smartphone sales to taper off as the global slump deepens.

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