Sony’s quarterly profit drops by nearly half

“Sony Corp. said Thursday its profit in the latest quarter dropped by nearly half from a year ago, as electronics sales stayed flat, its movies business stumbled and earnings suffered from a heavier tax burden and losses related to equity holdings. The electronics and entertainment company reported a net profit of 28.5 billion yen ($246 million) for the three months ended Sept. 30, down 46 percent from 53.2 billion yen the same period a year ago,” Yuri Kageyama reports for The Associated Press.

Kageyama reports, “Like other Japanese electronics makers, Sony has been struggling in the last several years amid falling prices in consumer electronics and the emergence of cheaper Asian rivals. Sony fell behind Apple Computer Inc.’s iPod in portable music players. It was also late in putting out flat-panel TVs, falling behind Japanese rivals Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd., which makes Panasonic brand products, and Sharp… Sony announced a revival plan last month under Chief Executive Howard Stringer, the first foreigner to head the Tokyo-based company.”

Full article here.

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Perhaps Sony ought to quit stalling and finally sign on the dotted lines for Apple’s iTunes Music Store Australia and Japan? It sounds like Sony could use all the revenue they can generate.

Related articles:
Sony-BMG deal imminent with Apple’s iTunes Music Store Australia – October 26, 2005
Apple passes 600 million iTunes Music Store songs sold milestone – October 25, 2005
Analyst: Sony BMG’s boycott of Apple’s iTunes Music Store Australia won’t last long – October 24, 2005
Coles Myer to carry Apple iTunes Music Store Cards in Australia – October 24, 2005
Apple launches iTunes Music Store Australia – October 24, 2005
Report: If Apple launches iTunes Music Store Australia tomorrow, Sony BMG won’t be included – October 24, 2005
Japan music labels look to impose ‘iPod Tax’ while Sony, Warner still not signing with Apple iTunes – October 10, 2005
Why aren’t Sony, BMG, Warner, Victor making their artists’ music available on Apple’s iTunes Japan? – October 06, 2005
Sony and Warner holding out on Apple iTunes Music Store Australia – September 08, 2005
Musicians stage mutiny against Sony, defiantly offer music via Apple’s iTunes Music Store – August 10, 2005
Record company causes Apple to hit ‘pause’ on Australian iTunes Music Store – May 05, 2005


  1. It’s too bad, until recently, I’d liked Sony. In the past few years, they haven’t produced anything really impressive though. A lot of their stuff is similar to other producers out there. This is one reason Apple is doing well – they aren’t just following the market.

  2. Both Sony and Dell right now are basically at their 52 week lows. Meanwhile Apple is within about a dollar of being at their all-time high. Apple definitely has the opposite end of the spectrum thing working for them right now. We’ll see now how the holiday sales season turns out. The big three items for this season are obviously the new iPods (nano and video), the PSP from Sony and the Xbox 360 from M$. Let’s see who comes out on top.

  3. Sony has always had an attitude of, “We are the greatest…we can do no wrong.”

    Over the years of attending broadcaster’s equipment shows, the smugness and attitude of Sony reps kept me out of thier booth.
    “You vil pay our high price unt like it, becauz ve are Sony unt ve are der Greatest!” …………I don’t think so.

    Reality check time! Buh,bye Sony. Won’t miss you.

  4. Apple makes their own markets.

    Sony charges a premium for products. The Chinese churn out “good enough” products for peanuts. The unwashed knuckle dragging masses think good enough is good enough. This is the same mentality that keeps Dell and Microsoft raking in the cash. If it’s “good enough” people will pay…

    Although, we may be seeing the tide turn.

  5. What about the idea that as disposable income shrinks, people decide to shop on value instead of price? Buy one good thing instead of a couple of cheap ones! Especially if the good thing has some extra benefits? iPod not the cheapest by itself, but combined with the rest of the package (iTunes and iTMS, free and just buy what you want), it is a powerful incentive.

    MW-average. Sony earnings are below average, Aple’s are above average

  6. Which kind of explains why Apple is now worth over $14.75 billion more than Sony (or just over 46% more, to put it another way).

    Sony could learn some valuable lessons from the post-Second Coming Apple, particularly in the area of focus. Apple no longer tries to make/re-market cameras, printers or any other peripherals to which it cannot add a unique selling proposition that ties into the whole Apple experience.

    Having a mere handful of products (pro computing, consumer computing, pro software, music) means that time and care can be taken on design, to the point that the product actually embodies the value of the brand. In comparison, Sony – with a desire to compete at every point in the CE marketplace – doesn’t have the capacity to express that care [B]throughout[/B] the portfolio, which means that the well-designed, carefully developed product is compromised by the “me too” products, which in turn devalues the brand.

    As a result of the chaos at the heart of Sony, it is now seen as expensive, but no longer seen as exclusive. And the costs of maintaining the brand’s profile are no longer viable, when you’re dealing with highly commoditised products.

    Rationalisation is the answer here: get out of CRT televisions globally, likewise VCRs, and cheap/cheerful home theatre packages. Whilst you’re at it – get the hell out selling entry-level CD players, or DVD-players. Every single one of these products are done cheaper by someone else, and the game isn’t worth the candle.

    Keep the following: –

    Broadcast & Professional
    Film, TV & Music

    And start developing and selling premium-quality product that has genuine innovation, as opposed to merely throwing a Memory Stick slot in everything. And if you can, find out if you can find some of Akio Morita’s DNA and have him cloned, because – without someone like him – Sony appears to have become sclerotic, bureaucratic and directionless.

    And before we Apple-headz get too jubilant, we should see the decline of Sony post-Morita as a warning of what might happen as and when Steve Jobs decides to retire.

  7. The problem with companies like Dell and Sony etc, who are making generic products, where the only real differentiating factor is the price is that when other people come in cheaper than you, you have nothing to fall back on.

    Sony used to have a reputation for quality, now they’re just like any other company. Apple have earned a reputation for quality and style and are also cementing that with ever more reasonable prices for their products. They also have the advantage that more and more people are realising that cheap crap is cheap crap so their perceived expense is less of a factor anyway.

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