LG was this close to making money on smartphones in Q1 2017, posting great overall profits
They say the darkest hour is just before the dawn, and indeed, the worst may finally be behind LG’s long-struggling smartphone business. While the G6 officially started its “global” rollout after this year’s first quarter wrapped up, only launching in Korea and shipping to a number of lucky early US adopters in March, the chaebol’s Mobile Communications division stopped bleeding money all of a sudden.
The “weak” G5 and relatively strong but nichey V20, alongside the company’s respectable low to mid-end Androids, were still unable to post a profit between January and March 2017. Compared to the 467 billion won they lost during Q4 2016 however, this past quarter’s deficit of KRW 200 mil almost feels like a win.
That equates to a measly $176,000, for the record, and with the G6 largely praised by reviewers, as well as welcomed by many prospective buyers as a solid, more affordable Samsung Galaxy S8 alternative, LG can realistically expect to return to net smartphone gains in Q2 following a nightmare period of over two years.
Of course, the Seoul-based electronics giant as a whole can already tout its best financial results in nearly eight years. We’re talking operating Q1 2017 profits of 921.5 billion won ($811 million) all in all, which is nothing compared to arch-rival Samsung’s latest feat, although as far as LG is concerned, it’s up 416.3 and 956.7 billion won year-over-year and quarter-on-quarter respectively. That’s mainly thanks to tremendous growth in the Home Appliance & Air Solution segment, with the Home Entertainment department also a much stronger performer than before.