Things have been tough for Sony this last decade or so, with their once-towering stock ($150 a share in 2000) bottoming out at $9.75 in 2012. Since then, the Japanese company has been on the move to adopt a new corporate identity and remain competitive in the global market. As of the close of second quarter 2015, things might be looking up. Their stock has risen 35.6% in 2015, and the company has reported a narrow profit of $280 million.
In addition to changes in corporate policy that involve extensive restructuring and trimming, this boost is due in part to a recent drop in the value of the Yen (which has made Sony more globally competitive) and the ongoing success of the PS4. Advantageous exchange rates and a profit of $199 million from their game-related subdivision constitute the vast majority of this profitable season.
However, these boons don’t quite offset the billions of dollars they’ve lost in the television market against less expensive competitors from Taiwan and South Korea since 2005. Sony’s mobile division is still having a hard go of it as well, reporting a “significant decrease” in smartphone unit sales over the second quarter of 2015. Their smart phone business dropped 15%, a $172 million loss.
On a smaller scale, this drop seems like bad news, but when you compare it to the $1.58 billion Sony Mobile lost in the second quarter of 2014… it’s really not so bad. Sony Mobile has a long way to go before it’s in the black, but it has also come a long way as well.
Sony is choosing to de-emphasize these less-than-profitable endeavors, and they’re focusing on those areas of business that are seeing good returns. Their ongoing sale of camera components and semiconductors to bigger mobile players like Apple and Samsung, for instance, continues to be on the rise.
As it stands, Sony is still struggling to get back on their feet, but things are looking brighter. It seems they have the PS4 to thank for that, however, not their mobile devices.