Inside Pulse 12

Sony PlayStation Division Hits $85m USD Q2 Profit

Sony’s Networked Products and Services division, which includes the PlayStation products, profited (reg required) Â¥6.9b ($85m USD) profit for Q2 of their financial year. This is a major turnaround for a company that lost Â¥59b ($731m!) for the same period of time in 2009, and is despite a decrease in game sales from Â¥196b ($2.4b) to Â¥171b ($2.1b).

The big reason for the turnaround was the PlayStation 3 console. Sales of the console, spurred on by the release of their “Slim” models which reduced costs and were able to be sold at a price point comparable to the Xbox 360, went from 23.9m to 35.3m units in the two cycles. The addition of the Move, which was released in North America and the UK in September and just last week in Japan, was also cited by Sony as a boost. For the rest of the NPD, PC sales of Sony’s Vaio line were another catalyst. PlayStation Portable and PlayStation 2 sales dropped, with the PSP taking a notable 50% drop to 1.5m units sold, but Sony is still sticking to their end-year forecasts for units sold.

As a corporation, Sony recovered from a weak Q2 of 2009 (¥26.3/$323m loss) in a big way, scoring an impressive ¥62.7b ($777.1m) profit.

I expect Sony to do well through the coming months. The Move is going to be bundled with a 320GB system and a Sports Champions for Christmas, which should drive sales. I also expect the PlayStation Portable to make a recovery due to the upcoming God of War: Ghost of Sparta, which will also be bundled with new PSP-3000 model systems. Despite being recognised as a failure by most industry analysts and consumers, the PSPgo will probably sell decently as well, due to the recent price reduction. I’m not privvy to PC sales numbers and don’t follow that industry – outside of networking and security, which are my trained professions – so I can’t comment on them, but just solely in terms of video games, Sony’s looking strong for the rest of the year heading into 2011.

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