Samsung's chip business boosts quarterly results

Allan Goodman
April 11, 2017

IBK Securities Co. Lee Seung-Woo said Samsung's earnings will further improve down the road as its revamped Galaxy S8 smartphone hits the market this month.

Samsung Electronics logged a near-record operating profit in the January-March quarter despite the absence of Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, who has been in custody for bribery charges.

(AP Photo/Lee Jin-man). A woman walks by an advertisement of the Samsung Electronics Galaxy S8 and S8+ smartphone in Seoul, South Korea, Friday, April 7, 2017.

LG estimated its first-quarter operating profit rose 82 percent to its highest in almost eight years.

Ousted president Park was thrown into jail last week after a court ordered her arrest in connection with the sweeping corruption scandal that brought millions of people onto the streets and saw her impeached.

The estimated revenue during the same period came in at 14.66 trillion won, up 0.7 percent on-year, the company said.

Lee - the first leader in Samsung's history to be detained in a criminal probe - was arrested in February for paying 43 billion won (US$ 37.37 million) in bribes to organizations linked to the president's childhood friend Choi Soon-sil to secure the 2015 merger of two Samsung affiliates and solidify his control of the business.

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In the past, Trump has talked about altering trade policies with China and naming the country as a currency manipulator . North Korea has stepped up ballistic missile tests and has staged five nuclear tests so far, including two a year ago .

The discontinuation of the fire-prone Galaxy Note 7 smartphone in October a year ago weakened Samsung's mobile phone business in recent months, but the company seemed to have overcome the debacle.

The strong comeback was a result of booming sales of memory chips and flat-panel displays, Samsung said.

His father Chairman Lee Kun-hee has been hospitalized for heart attack for nearly three years.

The South Korean firm's Galaxy Note 7 smartphone was plagued with problems.

While some companies have been struggling financially for quite a bit now, Samsung has been able to hold strong over the last couple of years.

The biggest earner, though, was Samsung's semiconductor business, which South Korean analysts say pulled in more than 6 trillion won ($5.2 billion) in profit.

Although the company did not detail income by segment in its guidance, industry experts believe the stellar first-quarter performance was largely driven by a boon in memory chip business. Samsung is expected to have posted a sound operating profit from its chipmaking business, which may have reached a whopping 6 trillion won.

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