The Korea Herald

지나쌤

Samsung posts record Q4 earnings

Tech giant becomes first Korean firm to top W200tr in annual sales

By Korea Herald

Published : Jan. 25, 2013 - 20:23

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Samsung Electronics said Friday its 2012 fourth-quarter operating profit jumped 89.4 percent from a year before on strong exports of its Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 smartphones.

Its net profit grew 75.6 percent on-year to 7.04 trillion won ($6.59 billion) in the three months to December, the company said in a regulatory filing.

The world’s top smartphone maker achieved its largest-ever quarterly sales of 56.1 trillion won, up 18.51 percent from a year earlier, and operating profit of 8.84 trillion won.

Samsung Electronics also became the first Korean company to make more than 200 trillion won in annual sales. For all of 2012, it reported 201.1 trillion won in sales and 29.05 trillion won in operating profit.

The company’s net profit jumped 73.3 percent to 23.85 trillion won last year. Robust sales of mobile gadgets were the main driving force behind record-high earnings.

More than half of the tech giant’s sales and nearly 70 percent of its operating profit last year came from its IM, or IT plus mobile, division thanks to increased sales of smartphones and tablet PCs. The IM division posted 108 trillion won in sales and 19.44 trillion won in operating profit last year.

Samsung said on Jan. 14 that it sold 4.1 million Galaxy S3 phones in the seven months since its debut in May last year. Shipments of the Galaxy Note 2 phone-tablet device introduced in September surpassed 5 million as of November.

Analysts estimate the company sold 213 million smartphones last year, more than Apple’s 135.8 million units.

Quarterly results of Samsung’s display panel, semiconductor and consumer electronics divisions also picked up.

The display panel unit saw its operating profit grow nearly eightfold from a year ago to 1.11 trillion won in the three months to December, on solid demand for TV and tablet panels.

Despite an industry-wide slump, Samsung’s semiconductor business logged an operating profit of 1.42 trillion won in the fourth quarter, compared with 1.31 trillion won a year earlier, on the back of high-margin products.

The consumer electronics division posted an operating profit of 740 billion won, compared with 540 billion won a year earlier, on demand for high-end home appliances in developed markets.

Meanwhile, Samsung said it suffered losses due to the Korean won’s gain as the local currency appreciated 3.8 percent against the greenback in the October-December period from three months earlier.

Samsung Electronics shares closed at 1,417,000 won on Friday, down 2.48 percent.

By Kim So-hyun (sophie@heraldcorp.com)