Hitachi logs nine-month profit jump on one-time gain from stake sale

TOKYO (AFP) - Hitachi's group net profit more than doubled in the nine months to December - thanks to improved sales and the disposal of part of its stake in an American firm - and lifted its full-year outlook.

Net profit soared 152.7 per cent on-year to 127.3 billion yen (S$1.6 billion) in April-December. Operating profit rose 27.4 per cent to 295.5 billion yen on sales of 6.77 trillion yen, a rise of 4.7 per cent from a year earlier.

Revenue and profits in its power generation systems business sank, with Japan's nuclear power plants remaining off-line following the Fukushima atomic disaster in 2011. But the slump was more than offset by robust business in lifts and railway systems abroad, as well as automotive systems.

Household appliances, such as white goods, also fared well due to a rush in demand ahead of a sales tax hike due in April, it said. The bottom line was also lifted by gains on selling some of the shares it held in US data storage company Western Digital.

Hitachi now expects a net profit of 215 billion yen for the full year to March instead of 210 billion yen projected previously. It also raised its full-year operating profit forecast to 510 billion yen from 500 billion yen and sales expectations to 9.4 trillion yen from 9.2 billion yen.

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