Riding the wave of gadget goodness from the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Samsung released a pretty impressive set of fourth quarter earnings estimates, including a record high profit.
The South Korean electronics manufacturer says it will make $8.3bn (€6.4bn) in profits on $52.7bn in revenue. That’s a shade better than Apple’s own record high profit of $8.2bn on just $32bn, and shows Samsung is making more money than Apple now if its estimates are correct.
The company said it is on course to achieve its goal of becoming the world’s top home appliances maker by 2015, with sales growing an estimated 50% by then.
Samsung, which makes more chips, flat-screens, handsets, and TVs than any of its competitors — including the world’s best-selling smartphone — is aiming to boost its home appliance segment and narrow the gap with companies including Whirlpool and Electrolux.
“I’m confident of Samsung becoming the world’s top appliances maker by 2015 with $18bn sales, as we set up a very well structured framework for key products and moving step by step to the goal, first starting with fridges,” Yoon Boo-keun, president of the division, told Reuters at the Consumer Electronics Show.
Analysts estimate that Samsung Electronics earned around 13tn won (€9.2bn) last year from home appliances, part of the firm’s consumer electronics arm.
Samsung Electronics would ditch unprofitable product lines and boost research into consumer tastes across different markets, Yoon said.
“It’s a business that can ensure steady cash flow with little earnings fluctuation, once you have a proper system in place,” Yoon said.
“It’s not dull at all and has great potential to become Samsung’s next earnings driver.”
Yoon, who was head of Samsung’s TV business until 2011, was put in charge of the thin-margin home appliance division a year ago with a mission to match the TV outfit’s success.
Known as Mr TV, he had a pivotal role in ending Japan’s more than three decades of leadership in the global TV industry in 2006.
In the long run, Samsung Electronics aims to become a global healthcare leader, taking on GE, Philips, Hitachi, Toshiba and Siemens.
In good news for arch rival, Apple, new figures show its smartphone market share has surpassed 50% in the US. for the first time ever, according to Kantar Worldpanel.
The launch of the iPhone 5 boosted iOS sales over a 12-week period ending on Nov 25, giving iOS a 53.3% share of the market.
During the same period, Android sales were said to have declined 10.9% to 41.9%. The research firm found that consumers have continued to shun Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform, which totalled a mere 2.7% of smartphone sales in the November period.
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