Officials from Sony Corp. have release details of the company’s third financial quarter, for the three months ended December 31st, 2007. The group as a whole saw net income rise 25 percent to ¥200.2 billion ($1.89bn), while sales rose by 9.6 percent to ¥2.86 trillion ($26.93bn).
The company’s net income result was well above analyst expectations of ¥190.4 billion, with revenues also higher than the ¥2.75 trillion expected. Significantly, the company’s game division recorded a profit for the first time since the PlayStation 3’s launch, with operating income up from a loss of ¥54.2 billion ($510.4m) the previous year to a positive figure of ¥12.9 billion ($121.5m).
Sales were up by 31.2 percent to ¥581.2 billion ($5.47bn). The operating income increase was specifically attributed to a successful reduction in PlayStation 3 hardware costs, despite a year-on-year decrease in profits from the PlayStation 2.
Despite this, the company has lowered its full year sales targets for the PlayStation 3 from 11 million units to 9.5 million. However, it raised targets for the PSP from 10 million to 13 million units.
Worldwide hardware unit sales for the PlayStation 3 hit 4.90 million during the three month period, an increase of 3.24 million units from the previous year. PSP sales were up 1.05 million to 5.76 million, while PlayStation 2 console sales were down 1.35 million to 5.40 million units.
The company sold 26.0 million units of PlayStation 3 software (up 20.7 million) and 60.9 million units of PlayStation 2 titles (down 17.7 million). The PSP sold only 18.3 million units of software, down 3.0 million on the previous year, highlighting a schism between the format’s hardware and software performance.
Following these results, the company has revised its full year forecasts, projecting net income up 3 percent to ¥340 billion ($3.20bn). Operating profit estimates have been reduced from ¥450 billion ($4.24bn) to ¥410 billion ($3.86bn) while full year sales projections remain unchanged.