Samsung Tips Best Quarterly Profit in Over Three Years as Chips Soar

Guillermo Lane
April 10, 2017

The outlet also stated that some analysts said losses were smaller in the quarter as LG's new lower-tier products fared better and the company reduced market spending. Samsung scrapped its flagship smartphones a year ago after they overheated and caught fire, leaving billions of dollars in financial damages and hurting its reputation.

The heir to the huge Samsung business empire appeared in court Friday at the start of his trial for embezzlement and perjury, part of a corruption scandal that brought down South Korea's president.

Samsung, in a regulatory filing, said its January-March profit was likely 9.9 trillion won ($8.76 billion), compared with an average forecast of 9.4 trillion won from a Thomson Reuters survey of 18 analysts. Samsung estimates revenue will remain flat at around 50 trillion won for the first three months of 2017.

That would be the second-highest quarterly operating profit for Samsung, after a high of 10.1 trillion won in the third quarter of 2013, the Yonhap news agency reported.

Samsung Electronics says its first-quarter profit jumped 48 percent likely due to smartphone component sales.

Lee sat quietly and did not speak as South Korean prosecutors presented a slew of evidence they said showed why and how the 48-year-old used 43 billion won ($38 million) in corporate funds to bribe the country's impeached president, Park Geun-hye, and a close confidante of hers, mainly in exchange for supporting a smooth leadership transition at Samsung.

Lee faces five charges that could entail at least five years in prison if he is found guilty.

Lee, who was arrested in February, has been charged with offering almost $40 million to the now-impeached president and her close friend Choi Soon-Sil, allegedly as bribes to secure policy favours.

Samsung, the world's largest maker of smartphones and display panels, has unveiled the Galaxy S8 smartphone last week, which is set to go on sales later this month.

Growing demand for more firepower from devices such as smartphones and servers have also helped push up margins for Samsung and its rivals in recent quarters.

Lee's lawyer flatly denied the charges.

"Generally speaking I think the improved product mix in appliances and televisions and the company's efforts to sell high-end products lifted profits", HI Investment analyst Song Eun-jeong said. Last week, it presented and began taking preorders for its Galaxy S8, its first major smartphone launch since the fire-prone Galaxy Note 7 fiasco.

Other reports by TheDigitalNewspaper

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