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Sony Income Dips in Q4

28 Apr, 2006 By: Jessica Wolf

Sony Pictures' 2005 releases Stealth, Zathura and The Legend of Zorro couldn't compare to the prior year's Spider-Man 2 juggernaut in theatrical and home video sales.

The studio posted a 27% drop in operating income for the fiscal year ended March 31, from $321 billion to $234 billion in the United States, according to the company's financial results released April 27.

Overall, Sony Pictures' parent company, Sony Corp., ended 2005 with a higher-than-forecast net profit of 123.6 billion yen ($1 billion).

But the electronics giant also reported an increase in losses for the fiscal fourth quarter of 2005, from 66.5 billion yen ($581 million), compared to the prior year fourth quarter 56.4 billion yen loss.

Sony attributed restructuring costs and research and development spending in the game category as contributing to the near 18% loss increase.

In the game segment for the year, Sony reported shipments of 16.2 million PlayStation 2 hardware units, 50,000 units over 2004 fiscal. The company shipped 223 million software units for PS2, a 29 million unit decrease.

For the PlayStation Portable, Sony recorded 14 million hardware units shipped, an 11 million unit increase over 2004, and 41.6 million software units, up by 35.9 million units.

Sales of traditional TVs decreased for the fiscal year as consumers shifted toward flat-panel displays. Sales of liquid crystal display sets like Sony's Bravia increased across all geographic areas, and sales of rear-projection LCD models increased in the United States.

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