While Samsung Electronics recorded quarterly sales of KRW 70 trillion for the first time in its history in the July-September period, the IT and mobile (IM) division in charge of the smartphone business was also supported by the performance of 3G mobile phones. , recorded sales of 28 trillion won. Even in the supply-demand turmoil of semiconductor parts that continued from the first quarter, foldable smartphones showed a recovery in performance.

According to Samsung Electronics on the 28th, the IM division recorded sales of 28.42 trillion won and operating profit of 3.36 trillion won in the third quarter. Sales were down 7% year-on-year, but up 25% from the previous quarter. Operating profit decreased by 1.1% YoY, but improved by 0.12% QoQ.

Expensive third-generation foldable phone new products 'Galaxy Z Fold 3' and 'Galaxy Z Flip 3' led to an increase in overall smartphone sales. Domestic sales of "Z Flip 3" and "Z Fold 3" released in August exceeded 1 million units in 39 days from release, and "Galaxy Note 10" and "Galaxy S8" of the box office record It followed and recorded the third fastest sales. Global sales have exceeded 3 million units.

Growth in the Galaxy Ecosystem product line, including wearables, PCs, and tablets, and mid-low-priced lineups such as the Galaxy A series also supported smartphone performance. Similarly, the network division expanded overseas business to the North American and Japanese markets while continuously responding to the expansion of the domestic 5G mobile communication network.

Compared to sales, the margin of improvement in the operating profit margin was not large compared to the previous term. This is because the supply shortage of semiconductor parts caused by Corona 19, which has continued since the first quarter, continues to affect smartphone shipments. Samsung is concerned about the large-scale marketing strategy for the launch of the 'foldable phone' and the good performance of the foldable phone.

In the fourth quarter, the smartphone market is expected to slow down due to the shortage of supply and demand for semiconductors.

In a recent report, market research firm Counterpoint Research lowered its forecast for smartphone sales this year to a total of 1.41 billion units, with an annual growth rate of 6%. Initially, the annual sales volume was 1.45 billion units, up about 9% from the previous year.

“The semiconductor shortage has affected 90% of the smartphone industry and will affect overall sales in the second half of this year,” said Tom Gunn, an analyst at Counterpoint.

Samsung Electronics plans to continue to innovate foldable products in the fourth quarter and to position itself as an important category in the premium market by making Samsung Electronics' unique differentiation such as bespoke editions. For medium- and low-priced smartphones, we will respond based on products optimized for various regional needs, such as medium- and low-priced 5G phones.

Samsung Electronics recorded consolidated sales of 73.98 trillion won and operating profit of 15.82 trillion won in the July-September quarter. It also increased by 10.5% compared to the same period of the previous year, which recorded the highest sales in the existing quarter.

Reporter Cha Min Young (blooming@asiae.co.kr)