Sony’s annual financial report is out and it ain’t pretty. As expected, the company posted a billion-dollar overall loss (-$1.26bn/£746m). That’s despite sales as a whole being 14.3 per cent up ($76bn/£45bn).
Sony’s reason for the huge loss was, as has been publicly talked about before, restructuring – particularly selling off its PC business and splitting the TV business out into its own thing. Sony’s been selling off headquarters in the US and Japan, selling shares and foregoing bonuses trying to offset these costs.
‘But don’t worry,’ the company had seemed to suggest – this will be a one-off thing and pave the way for a brighter future. But while next year will be better, the company still expects to post a significant loss (-$487m/£290m). But by this time next year those costly restructuring processes will really actually be complete.
Against that billion-dollar loss, PS4 is doing well. We know about the 7 million units Sony says it’s sold, and it didn’t get any more specific in this morning’s results. Sony lumps sales of consoles together.
Total PS3/PS4 sales for the year were 14.6m units, whereas last year PlayStation consoles managed 16.5m sales – but that included PS2.
Since PS4 has been in play, quarterly sales have also been higher – but not drastically so. In Q3, this past Christmas period, 7.8m PS3/PS4s were sold. Last year that was 6.8m, including PS2.
In Q4, 3.7m PS3/PS4s were sold, and last year that number was 3.4m – again, including PS2.
So things are on the up. Well, sales were up for the Game segment (+38.5 per cent), but it still posted an operating loss (-$78m). That’s because it cost a lot of money to launch PS4 to the world, but not as much as it cost ($60m!) to write-off some of Sony Online Entertainment’s old MMOs.
Sony expects PS3/PS4 console sales – presumably more PS4 than PS3 – to pick up next year and total 17m. It’s a different story for the portable consoles, though – Vita, Vita TV and PSP – which dipped to 4.1m unit sales this year, and are expected to dip again to 3.5m next year.
Software sales, including digital, are up this year for the home consoles and are expected to rise again next year. Sony expects “network services revenue” to buffet the bank balance too.
Sony’s got a big ‘our plan’ meeting scheduled for 22nd May. And, of course, there’s E3 shortly after.