Samsung is expecting another record-high quarter, having estimated its consolidated operating profit should amount to the equivalent $14.13 billion over the three-month period ending December 31st. The company's preliminary financial report published Tuesday also references an increase in sales that the firm believes will amount to over $61 billion in the same quarter. For the entire 2017, the Seoul-based tech giant predicted an operating profit of over $50 billion on more than $222 billion of revenue. While the final quarter of the last year isn't likely to be as lucrative as the previous one, the company's performance for the entirety of 2017 is by far the highest one in its history, both in terms of income and turnover.
Samsung didn't provide a breakdown of its estimates in an attempt to project the performance of its individual divisions, though the firm's semiconductor unit is believed to have once again been responsible for the bulk of its profits. The surging global demand for various memory chips recently propelled Samsung to the title of the world's largest chipmaker which has been held by Intel for 24 years. While Samsung's previous investments in NAND flash memory and related businesses allowed it to take advantage of the spike in worldwide demand for such offerings observed in 2017, many industry watchers remain skeptical about the chaebol's potential to maintain its momentum going forward. With many rivals from China and other countries being on the course to ramp up their memory manufacturing operations and the global demand for memory chips having already peaked over the summer, the market is expected to see a significant decline in terms of both prices and customers in 2018. A sudden drop-off may result in Samsung being a victim of its own success, a number of analysts previously speculated, adding that the tech giant likely won't be able to repeat its 2017 performance anytime soon, yet its current market valuation is understood to partially rely on its ability to do so.
Starting this year, the share of consumer electronics such as Android smartphones in Samsung's overall turnover and income is expected to start increasing. The company's next premium devices with high profit margins are expected to be announced late next month in the form of the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus. Samsung will publish its consolidated financial report for Q4 2017 in late January.