Samsung Q2 earnings fall, mobile device sales disappoint

Samsung Electronics has released its Q2 2015 financial report. Sales were down approximately 8% from the year-ago quarter, totalling 48.54 trillion Korean won ($41.3 billion). Operating profit was down 5% compared to Q2 2015, at 6.90 trillion KRW ($5.8 billion) for the quarter. 

Samsung's smartphone sales declined, with the IT & Mobile division's sales down 10% to 26.06 trillion KRW ($22 billion), contributing 2.76 trillion KRW ($2.2 billion) in profit. The profits represent a drop of more than 37% from a year ago. Q2 sales and profits were down for the second straight year. Q2 smartphone sales were down from the previous quarter, as well, and Samsung blames lower sales of older phones. The company says shipments of the flagship Galaxy S6 line have increased since launch, and that it will maintain sales of the premium smartphones by "flexibly adjusting the price of the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge." It's hard to see that statement as anything other than a pre-announcement of a price cut. 

In brighter news, Samsung's semiconductor sales were strong. Both sales and operating profit are up from the year-ago quarter. Sales totaled 11.29 trillion KRW ($9.6 billion), and operating profits increased 90% to 3.4 trillion KRW ($2.9 billion). Memory sales were lower than their seasonal average, but Samsung credits high demand for 14-nm mobile chips and high-end LSI products such as its high-megapixel CMOS image sensors for picking up the slack. 

Looking forward, Samsung says it expects demand to increase for its mobile devices, albeit at a slowing rate of growth. It also expects high demand for its high-density DDR4 memory chips, solid-state storage products, and 14-nm foundry capacity later in the year. 

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