Analysts have predicted that PlayStation creator Sony Corp. will report an operating profit increase of around 500 percent at the end of the company’s next financial year, with the game division expected to recover from a current fiscal year operating loss of ¥200 billion ($1.69bn).
A consensus forecast of analysts suggested overall profits for the company of ¥400 billion ($3.37bn), with sales up 6 percent to ¥8.7 trillion ($73.34bn) for the twelve months ending March 2008.
The figures were reported in Japanese newspaper the Nikkei Sangyo Shimbun and translated by the Reuters news agency. The figure of ¥400 billion is above the market consensus of around ¥350 billion, and a significant increase from the current year’s figure of ¥60 billion.
The predicted improvements, which were based on averages from a Japanese analyst poll from financial information service Quick, are based on strong sales of LCD HDTVs in America and Europe, and a predicted recovery of Sony’s game division thanks to significantly higher PS3 sales.
Analyst predictions suggested PlayStation 3 shipments for the new business year will increase by 67 percent to 10 million units, benefiting from better semiconductor production yields and other cost cutting measures – such as the removal of the Emotion Engine emulation chip. Sony however has denied these projected figures.
[UPDATE: According to a separate report by financial website Bloomberg, Sony has denied analysts' 10 million unit figure. In addition, the report also cited a Sony representative who noted that the company is also looking into introducing a "model with a bigger hard disk,” though no further details were given.]