Sharp on track for 1st pretax profit in 3 years
Less-costly supply contract seen boosting solar battery operations
OSAKA -- Sharp said on Friday it will likely post a group net loss of 27.1 billion yen ($239 million) for the year through March, far smaller than the 37.2 billion yen loss it previously forecast.
On a pretax basis, the Japanese electronics manufacturer expects to post its first group profit in three years, at 9.9 billion yen. The previous year, Sharp logged a loss of 192.4 billion yen.
The company maintained its full-year sales forecast at 2.05 trillion yen, down 17% on the year.
Sharp was able to release better figures because it won agreements to renegotiate contracts that had required it to purchase silicon -- a key material for solar batteries -- at premium prices. Sharp's solar battery business has been struggling.
Of the company's six major businesses, only the solar battery segment recorded an operating loss for the October-December period. The loss was partly due to an additional provision of 7.6 billion yen related to materials supplies. Long-term contracts to buy silicon have been dragging on the business. New supply deals will help make Sharp profitable across all segments.