Sony reports decline in 3Q film, games revenue

MUMBAI: Sony has announced consolidated results for the third quarter that ended 31 December 2003. In the motion pictures segment the sales decreased compared with the same quarter of the prior year due to a decrease in home entertainment revenues.

The sales and operating revenue saw a decline of 29.3 per cent to Y181.2 from Y256.3 in the corresponding quarter in 2002. Results were negatively impacted by the disappointing US theatrical performance of Ron Howard's western The Missing. The home video segment meanwhile missed a big ticket item like Spiderman. Overall however the sales and operating revenue saw a marginal 0.7 per cent increase to Y2,307.7

Sales in the game segment decreased due to decreased sales of hardware, although sales of software increased.

On a more positive note operating income increased in the music segment, primarily due to benefits realised from restructuring activities. The operating income here saw an increase of over 50 per cent. Sales for the US operations increased by six per cent. Album sales increased due to higher sales outside the US. Also helping the situation was the appreciation of European currencies.

During the quarter, Sony and Bertelsmann AG announced that they had signed a binding agreement to combine their recorded music businesses in a joint venture. The newly formed company, which will be known as Sony BMG, will be 50 per cent owned by each parent company. It will not include Sony Music's music publishing, physical distribution and disc manufacturing businesses or Sony Music Japan. The merger is subject to regulatory approvals in the US and the European Union.

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