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(3rd LD) Samsung Q2 net jumps 50 pct on Galaxy boom, higher chip prices
SEOUL, July 26 (Yonhap) -- Samsung Electronics Co., the world's top maker of memory chips and smartphones, said Friday that its second-quarter profit spiked 49.6 percent from a year earlier, buoyed by robust shipments of its flagship Galaxy S smartphones.

   Net profit came to 7.77 trillion won (US$6.96 billion) in the April-June period, compared with a profit of 5.19 trillion won a year earlier, the company said in a regulatory filing.

   Revenue soared 20.7 percent on-year to a record 57.46 trillion won in the second quarter and operating profit climbed 47.5 percent to a record 9.53 trillion won.

   The stronger bottom line was largely attributed to strong sales of the company's flagship mobile devices and seasonal demand for electronics products and higher chip prices.

   Shares of Samsung Electronics closed at 1,303,000 won on the Seoul bourse, down 0.91 percent from Thursday's close.

   Samsung's sound business results came from brisk sales of the Galaxy S4 and other mobile devices such as the Galaxy Note 2.

   Samsung said earlier that the Galaxy S4, the latest in its Galaxy S smartphone line-up, would bask in good results that are stronger than its previous models.

   Global sales of its Galaxy S4 smartphone surpassed the 10 million mark since its release in late April.

   The milestone comes 20 days faster than its predecessor, the Galaxy S3. It took seven months and five months, respectively, for the Galaxy S and the Galaxy S2 to reach that milestone, Samsung said.

   Samsung's smartphone shipments reached a record during the second quarter of the year.

   According to the data compiled by research firm Strategy Analytics, Samsung Electronics shipped a record 76 million smartphones in the second quarter, compared with 69.4 million in the previous quarter.

   The South Korean smartphone maker also continued to dominate the global smartphone market in terms of market share, with its stake in the April-June period standing at 33.1 percent, remaining flat from the previous quarter, according to the researcher.

   Profits at its mobile division, the biggest earnings generator, rose 52 percent to 6.28 trillion won from a year ago. The division's sales reached 35.54 trillion won in the second quarter.

   But its mobile business logged less profit compared to the previous quarter on increased marketing costs, falling 3.5 percent from the previous quarter.

   Also, demand for high-end smartphones somewhat weakened, as consumers in emerging markets opted to pick cheaper devices, leaving a smaller margin to smartphone makers.

   Samsung Electronics said its average selling prices of smartphones may fall slightly in the third quarter as low-end and midrange smartphones account for a large share of its sales.

   "Samsung should prove that its smartphone business can further grow in the face of growing demand for low-end and midrange devices," said Lim Dol-ri, an analyst at Shinyoung Securities.

   Samsung said its chip, display panel and consumer electronics divisions also saw an improvement in their performances.

   Samsung's semiconductor business logged an operating profit of 1.76 trillion won in the second quarter, compared with 1.03 trillion won a year earlier, on the back of high-margin products.

   The display panel unit saw its operating profit nearly double to 2.92 trillion won over the cited period, driven by solid demand for TV and tablet panels. The unit's sales reached 17.5 trillion won.

   The consumer electronics division, however, suffered a decline in operating income at 430 billion won in the second quarter, compared with 730 billion won a year ago.

   Samsung Electronics said it spent a total of 9 trillion won in the first half on facility expansion and upgrades. The company plans to spend a record 24 trillion won for the whole year.

   sam@yna.co.kr
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