In short: LG’s Android smartphone unit is estimated to have lost the equivalent of $123 million over the course of the third quarter of the year, South Korean media reports, citing local analysts. The pessimistic forecast comes shortly after the Seoul-based technology giant published its preliminary financials for the same period, projecting the highest turnover in its 60-year history. Regardless, LG Mobile’s losses may reach up to $141 million, with the aforementioned figure being the most conservative projection, though that’s still an improvement compared to how the handset business has been performing in recent times.
Background: Another period of losses will see LG Mobile remain in the red for seven consecutive quarters now, with the company remaining unable to find a solution to the highly saturated state of the global smartphone market. Last quarter, the division lost $172 million even as LG Electronics as a whole was $715 million in the black, boasting of $13.9 billion in revenue. LG Mobile LG Mobile President and Chief Executive Officer Hwang Jeong-hwan on Wednesday said the company is likely to turn things around come 2019 once it launches its first 5G-enabled Android handset and a wide variety of other “aggressive” products, though analysts remain skeptical about the chances of that plan materializing. LG is set to detailed the performance of its mobile division in late October as part of its consolidated financial report for the newly concluded quarter.
Impact: While LG Mobile’s deficit now appears to be narrowing, the firm is still on course to lose some $500 million over the course of this year and its CEO’s promises of a turnaround being around the corner remain highly questionable, according to most industry analysts. LG still has no intentions of downsizing its smartphone ambitions and will continue investing money in an effort to remain competitive, which shouldn’t be an issue in the near term given how well most of its other units are currently doing.