The Japan Times

Sony logs record full-year sales but net profit dips

While the lockdown gaming boom has slowed, the firm has seen success in movies

-

Sony Group Corp. on Tuesday reported its best-ever sales in the financial year to March thanks to strong results in movies, electronic­s and music, while net profit dipped 14% from the previous year’s record high.

A lockdown-fueled gaming boom has slowed, but the Japanese giant has seen success in other entertainm­ent sectors, with “SpiderMan: No Way Home” overtaking “Avatar” as North America’s third-highest-grossing film.

Demand for sensors used in smartphone cameras has continued to soar, and Sony Music also scored a winner with Adele’s latest album, “30,” and strong license revenue in its popular anime business.

The conglomera­te reported full-year sales of ¥9.9 trillion ($76 billion) and net profit of ¥882 billion.

Sony logged a record net profit of more than ¥1 trillion, partly thanks to tax gains and the explosion in popularity of video games during COVID-19 lockdowns.

The 10% increase in sales from ¥8.99 trillion in the previous year “was mainly due to significan­t increases in sales in the pictures, electronic­s products and solutions and music segments,” Sony said.

Hideki Yasuda, senior analyst at Toyo Securities, said Sony would likely benefit from the fall of the yen, which has hit 20-year lows against the dollar this year.

He said the conglomera­te is now succeeding in a broader range of sectors with favorable business environmen­ts, such as music and movies.

“Sony is really turning into a content company now, from its previous status as an electronic­s manufactur­er.”

For the current financial year to March 2023, Sony predicts sales will rise 15% to ¥11.4 trillion, while net profit is projected to slip 6% to ¥830 billion.

Sony has faced challenges rolling out its PlayStatio­n 5 console, which remains difficult to get hold of 18 months after its November 2021 launch — in part due to supply chain disruption including the global chip shortage.

The company “could have sold so many more PS5s if they were able to produce more,” according to Serkan Toto, an analyst at Kantan Games in Tokyo.

“I don’t see any kind of problem for Sony in the gaming world or in the gaming market, except for the supply chain issues: it’s impossible to get a PlayStatio­n 5. It’s ridiculous,” he said.

Even then, Sony has released a stream of popular games from Ratchet and Clank to Gran Turismo 7, Toto said.

The company has said unfilled demand is strong enough to eventually bring the PS5 back on track to be its fastest-selling console generation, but data from outside firms such as U.S.-based NPD Group Inc. show Microsoft Corp.’s Xbox hardware began to outpace PlayStatio­n in recent months.

Sony will roll out new online services for PlayStatio­n users in June, including an option similar to Xbox’s Game Pass subscripti­on offering.

“We expect Sony to accelerate the PlayStatio­n 5’s production volume in this fiscal year to recapture the ground, though at the cost of pressure on profit margins,” Macquarie Capital Securities analyst Damian Thong said.

Sony also said it would buy back as much as ¥200 billion of its own shares after reporting earnings.

 ?? ??
 ?? AFP-JIJI ?? Left: Sony Group Corp. reported record sales in the business year to March. Above: Sony has faced challenges rolling out its PlayStatio­n 5 console due to supply chain disruption.
AFP-JIJI Left: Sony Group Corp. reported record sales in the business year to March. Above: Sony has faced challenges rolling out its PlayStatio­n 5 console due to supply chain disruption.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Japan