May 13, 2009

Pioneer Remains In The Red For Sixth Year In A Row

Pioneer Corp has announced its worst annual net loss in 2008 due to the decline in demand for plasma televisions.

The company reported a net loss of 130.53 billion yen ($1.34 billion) for the 2008 fiscal year that ended in March, compared to a loss of 19.04 billion yen in fiscal 2007. Pioneer has been in the red for six consecutive years.

The company cited lowered consumer demand for car audio products, plasma TVs and DVD players. Additionally, it projects a net loss of 83 billion yen for 2009.

In February, Pioneer said it would pull out of the television market and has announced job cuts for about 10,000 employees worldwide as it shifts its focus to car electronics.

"Car navigation systems will evolve to become an IT communications device in the future. We have decided to make it the core pillar of our business," said Pioneer president Susumu Kotani.

"We believe the current severe situation will continue for the first half of this year, but we should see a recovery starting from the second half."

"It will not be a major recovery. But we expect to see the tangible benefits of restructuring efforts from the second half. We should return to profitability from the next fiscal year."

The projected 83 billion yen net loss reflects a 47 billion yen restructuring cost during what the company referred to as "extremely challenging conditions."

According to AFP, the company is also considering applying for public funds to help it weather the economic storm. Additionally, Pioneer, which is 14.3 percent owned by Sharp Corp, is planning to sell 6.5 percent of stake to Honda Motor for an additional 2.5 billion yen.


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