Sony Corp. was finally back in black for the 2013 fiscal year after suffering from a four-year run of losses. The electronics and video gaming giant scored net income of 43 billion yen ($435.7 million USD) for the twelve month period ended March 31st, a sight better than the 456.7 billion yen ($4.6 billion USD) loss the year before.
Much of this could be attributed to the significant one-time gains the company made from selling off property (including its New York headquarters), business units and stock holdings. Having a few blockbuster film releases under their belt certainly didn't hurt.
Annual revenue rose 4.7 percent year-on-year to hit 6.8 trillion yen ($72.3 billion USD), and Sony is forecasting sales will rise and additional 10 percent over the next twelve months to hit 7.5 trillion yen. The company additionally predicts net income for the coming fiscal year will rise 16 percent to 50 billion yen ($507 million USD), slightly below estimates from other analysts.
Unfortunately, Sony's PlayStation business wasn't exactly sitting pretty while the rest of the company returned to profitability. Revenue from the gaming division itself fell 12.2 percent year-over-year to 707.1 billion yen ($7.2 billion USD), while operating income suffered a 94.1 percent drop to 1.7 billion yen ($17.2 million USD).
The company managed to sell a combined total of 16.5 million PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 2 consoles this past fiscal year, down year-over-year compared to 164.5 million units. PlayStation Vita and PlayStation Portable sales actually increased ever so slightly from 6.8 million to 7 million units in total. No further breakdown of how each platform performed individually was provided.
PS3 and PS2 software sales also suffered a year-on-year drop from to 164.5 million to 153.9 million units, while PS Vita and PSP software slipped from 32.2 million to 28.8 million units.
Sony doesn't expect current-generation console hardware and software sales to get any rosier in the new fiscal year, and forecasts year-over-year reductions. For example, the company estimates PS3 and PS2 sales will drop further still to 10 million units, while combined PS Vita and PSP sales will drop to 5 million units.
The good news is that Sony predicts its PlayStation business still stands to enjoy a significant increase in revenue for the fiscal year ending March 31st, 2014, thanks in no small part to the upcoming PlayStation 4 launch, but actual profit will likely remain flat once they factor in PS4 production and marketing costs.