Samsung Electronics says Q4 net profit slumps 38%
SEOUL: The world's biggest smartphone maker, Samsung Electronics, reported a slump in fourth-quarter net profits yesterday, blaming weakening demand in key products and falling chip prices.
Net profits in the October-to-December period were 5.23 trillion won (S$6 billion), down 38 per cent from a year ago, it said in a statement.
"Fourth-quarter profit dropped from a year earlier due to the continued fall in memory chip prices and weakness in display panels," Samsung said in a statement.
The firm is the flagship subsidiary of the giant Samsung Group, by far the largest of the family-controlled conglomerates known as "chaebols" that dominate business in South Korea, the world's 12th largest economy.
But it suffered a series of difficulties in 2019, with the global memory chip market - which has driven profits in recent years - hit by rising supply and falling demand.
The premium smartphone market has also grown fiercely competitive, with buyers waiting longer before upgrading to new models.
Samsung said it expects "weak sales from seasonality in memory chips, OLED and consumer electronics" in the first quarter of 2020 as the firm navigates "continued uncertainties in the global business environment".
Operating profit dropped more than 30 per cent year-on-year to 7.2 trillion won, while sales in the fourth quarter stood at 59.9 trillion won. - AFP