LG Electronics Profit Beats Estimates on TVs, G3 Smartphone

Jul 24, 2014 3:20 am ET

(Updates with analyst comment in fourth paragraph.)

July 24 (Bloomberg) -- LG Electronics Inc., the world’s second-largest television maker, posted second-quarter earnings that nearly tripled as the World Cup boosted its TV unit and the mobile division returned to profit with the G3 smartphone.

Net income, excluding minority interests, rose to 369.1 billion won ($359 million) in the three months ended June, the Seoul-based company said today. That compares with the 289.4 billion-won average of 20 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. The stock surged the most in a year.

LG added TVs with curved screens and ultra high definition technology to capture demand ahead of the World Cup in Brazil that finished this month. The company’s mobile business, which posted its first profit in the past four quarters, began sales of the new high-end G3 in May as it targets selling 10 million of the devices.

“The popular G3 will sell more in the third quarter and improve the average sales price and help boost profit,” said Park Kang Ho, an analyst at Daishin Securities Co. in Seoul. “LG’s TV business will also fare better than rivals due to its well-rounded product mix with an increasing portion of high-end offerings.”

Shares of LG rose 4.2 percent to 77,000 won at the close of trade in Seoul, the largest gain since July 2013. The stock has gained 13 percent this year compared with a 0.8 percent advance in the benchmark Kospi index.

Phone Revival

Operating income, or sales minus the cost of goods sold and administrative expenses, was 606.2 billion won in the second quarter compared to analyst estimates for 534.8 billion won. Sales were 15.4 trillion won.

The mobile phone unit posted quarterly operating income of 85.9 billion won with revenue of 3.62 trillion won. LG won customers for the G3, which debuted in South Korea in May before an international release in June, as well as demand for its L Series of smartphones.

The company shipped a record 14.5 million smartphones during the quarter, a 20 percent increase on the year earlier, driven by devices that run on fourth-generation networks.

“LG plans to continue its global rollout of the G3 and introduce more mass tier products in the second half,” it said in an e-mailed statement.

LG said it will invest 1.27 trillion won in a research center in Seoul as it seeks to boost its competitiveness as the company challenges Samsung Electronics Co. in smartphones, televisions and appliances.