Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB continues to reap the rewards from its Walkman and Cyershot branded devices as the handset manufacturer posted a massive rise in sales and profits in the first quarter of the year.
For the quarter ending March 31, the London, UK-based venture posted a 133% rise in net profits to 254m euros ($345m) from 109m euros ($148m) in the first quarter of 2006. Sales rose 47% to 2.93bn euros ($3.98bn) from 1.99bn euros ($2.71bn) in the year-ago quarter.
During the first three months of 2007, the Japanese Swedish joint venture shipped 21.8 million handsets, up 63% from the 13.3 million units it shipped in 2006.
Last month, signed a licensing and ODM agreement with Sagem Communication in an effort to cash in on the enormous growth in sales of low-end handsets for developing countries. Certainly, the ASP (average selling price) of Sony Ericsson devices is declining, to 134 euros ($182), down 10% from 149 euros ($202) a year earlier, as the company expands its portfolio with mid-tier and more competitively priced phones.
Geographically, the venture is experiencing strong growth in all regions. Asia saw sales up 35% year-on-year, while the Americas saw sales up 46% year-on-year. Meanwhile Europe, Middle East and Africa reported sales up 55%.
The company said it had captured market share in these markets through low and mid-tier products such as the W300 and W200 Walkman phones and the K310 camera phone without undermining profitability.
Looking forward, Sony Ericsson predicted that the 2007 global handset market would be more than 1.1 billion units.
Sony Ericsson continues to enjoy a great run thanks to the continued success of its Cyber-Shot (camera) and more specifically the Walkman (music) handsets. However it missed some analyst forecasts of a $375m profit.
Certainly, Sony Ericsson continues to take steps to try and oust Samsung Electronics from the third spot in the mobile market, as evidenced by signing its licensing and ODM agreement with Sagem Communication last month.