Car Radio Makers Report on First Half

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Pioneer, Alpine and JVCKenwood reported mixed results for the first half of the Japanese fiscal year ending September 30, 2017.

Alpine reported stronger than expected growth in sales and profits.

Total profits swung to a gain of $21.18 million compared to a loss of $18.56 million during the same period last year.  Total sales  for the 6 months ending September 30 grew to $1.11 billion (126,262 million yen), up from $1.06 billion.

The gains were due to strong OEM sales in Europe and other financial factors such as a weaker depreciation of the yen and lower taxes.

In the automotive sector, Alpine divides sales between audio products and information/navigation products.  Alpine reported automotive audio sales gained by over 20 percent to $227 million.  Among its OEM audio products are “free layout speakers” that provide more freedom of placement in the vehicle and new slimmer and lightweight speakers to keep fuel consumption down. A US Alpine spokesperson said Alpine is not free to provide more information on these speakers under its OEM agreements.

In information/navigation (called Information & Communications) Alpine sales increased 1 percent to $884.5 million.

As a result of the strong results, Alpine revised its forecast for the full year upward by 4 percent to $2.3 billion (260,000 million yen) from $2.2 billion.

Pioneer swung to a loss during the first half due to lower OEM sales.  But consumer car audio sales gained in North America.

Consumer sales in North America grew in the second quarter to $177 million (20.1 billion yen) from $165.6 billion during last year’s second quarter.

Total Pioneer sales for the first half fell to $1.55 billion (176,170 million yen) down from $1.68 billion.  The company swung to a loss of $23.3 million compared to a profit of $8.5 million in the first half a year ago.

Pioneer’s forecast for the full year ended in March remains unchanged. It predicts sales of $3.35 billion compared to sales of $3.4 billion a year ago. Pioneer expects to return to profitability with net income of $30.8 million, compared to a loss of $44.9 million the year prior.

JVCKenwood narrowed its loss for the first half.

Profits declined by $2.5 million compared to last year’s loss of $50.6 million. Sales rose to $1.3 billion compared to $1.2 billion a year ago.

In the automotive sector specifically, sales rose to $719.6 million, up from $595.5 million for the period a year ago.  And operating income gained to $27.3 million, up from $1.8 million a year ago.


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