source: Nikkei news
Electronic parts manufacturer retains full-year guidance. Nikkei staff writers
TOKYO — Murata Manufacturing suffered a 5% drop in group net profit to 120.4 billion yen ($1.11 billion) in the nine months through December due to a cost blowout stemming from mass production of a cutting-edge smartphone component.
Sales climbed 19% to 1.03 trillion yen, the Japanese company reported Tuesday. Sales of capacitors, including mainstay multilayer ceramic capacitors, rose 22% to 335.9 billion yen thanks to demand from electrified vehicles and new smartphone models.
The average exchange rate for April-December was 5 yen softer than the same period last year at 111.71 yen per dollar, lifting revenue by 26 billion yen.
But operating profit retreated 12% to 144.4 billion yen. Murata struggled to establish mass production of the MetroCirc multilayer resin substrate, a part crucial for realizing thin smartphones. This led to unexpected increases in labor and materials costs. Acquisition of the battery business from Sony in September did not help either, as it bled red ink.
Murata did not alter its forecast for the year ending in March. The company expects sales to jump 20% to 1.36 trillion yen and net profit to slide nearly 8% to 144 billion yen.
At the earnings announcement Tuesday, Vice Chairman Yoshitaka Fujita brushed off reports of Apple’s plan to cut production of the iPhone X, saying it “will not impact our forecast since we already accounted for the decrease.”