29th December, 2015 :Â
South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics reported its first annual earnings decline in three years.
Its net profit fell 27% from a year earlier to 5.3tn won ($4.8bn; Â£3.2bn) in the October to December period, in line with expectations.
But its profit of 25tn won for the year, down from a record 36.8tn won in 2013, was the lowest since 2011.
The world’s biggest smartphone maker has been facing stiff competition from Apple and cheaper Chinese rivals.
Revenue in its mobile business, which was the driver of record earnings in 2013, tumbled 23% in the fourth quarter from a year ago, while for the year it fell 19%.
Overall, the company’s sales fell 11% in the fourth quarter.
Despite its earnings coming within market expectations, the conglomerate’s shares closed down 1.3% in Seoul.
Demand for its smartphones and tablets will continue to fall in the first quarter of this year compared to the last because of seasonal factors, said Samsung in a statement on Thursday.
“The mobile business will focus on increasing sales and improving business performance through new product line-ups, such as the Galaxy A series,” it said.
The company’s lacklustre earnings come just a day after rival Apple reported the biggest quarterly profit ever made by a public company.
On the positive end, a boom in Samsung’s high-margin chip sales helped offset the downturn in its mobile business. Its semi-conductor division’s operating profit jumped almost 36% in the quarter.