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Sony Financials: Next-Gen R&D Hits Hard

Jonathan Lester
Financials, PS Vita, PS4, PSP, Sony
Sony Financials: Next-Gen R&D Hits Hard

Sony's latest quarterly financial report is exactly what you'd expect from a console manufacturer at the end of a generation: flat sales, but big fat research and development bills to pay.

Oh, and they're still a bit embarrassed about the Vita.

Sony’s PlayStation division (the bit we're interested in) clocked$1.2 billion in sales for the three months ending June 30th, a very slight decrease year on year compared to 2012. It's a relatively pleasing figure considering generational malaise, but naturally, developing the PlayStation 4 hasn't come cheap. Compared to a ¥3.5 billion loss in Q1 2012, this year sees Sony facing a ¥14.8 billion ($149 million) deficit - a 322% increase or decrease depending on how you look at it. Arguably nothing to be worried about - just the cost of doing business.

Once again, Sony has decided not to reveal sales data for the Vita, instead publishing combined figures for both Vita and PSP. The number in question is 0.6 million units worldwide, which isn't exactly stellar. Sony's handheld desperately needs an injection of quality first-party exclusives to build on its small yet mighty existing library, though will likely receive some serious attention as a PS4 companion device.

In terms of projections, Sony naturally expects the PlayStation 4 to bring home the bacon, but warns that manufacturing and publishing with put a major dent in the bottom line. We'll see what happens this holiday season.

Add a comment4 comments
Adster  Aug. 1, 2013 at 12:20

$1.2 billion in sales for the three months ending June 30th, a slight decrease year on year compared to 2012's $1.2 billion


Late  Aug. 1, 2013 at 12:54

It's right, from a certain perspective. Sales are down, but only by a tiny fraction. In Japanese Yen.

In Yen the figures are:
q/e 30/06/12 ¥118.0bn
q/e 30/06/13 ¥117.9bn

Those figures in USD (which is what the world's media tends to focus on) at the exchange rate on 30/06/13 are both $1.2bn (to the nearest $100m).

To further complicate things, the q/e 30/06/12 figures were actually $1.5bn at the time (using the exchange rate on 30/06/12) - so if we're looking at it in terms of US Dollars they've dropped from $1.5bn to $1.2bn - with $0.3bn attributable to exchange rate variations.

Let me complicate it even more. In GBP/Sterling they've gone from £930m last year to £777m this year, a fall of £153m - but again £152m of that is down to changes in the exchange rate.

So it's all down to perspective:
In Japanese Yen sales are down 0.1%
In US Dollars sales are down 18.9%
In GB Sterling sales are down 16.4%

Last edited by Late, Aug. 1, 2013 at 13:08
JonLester  Aug. 1, 2013 at 13:41

To quote Obi Wan: "what I told you was true... from a certain point of view." As Late said, I should have stated the figures in Yen, really, since the $US figure rounds to the same number.

I've reworded it to make it clearer and simpler - thanks Adster.

Last edited by JonLester, Aug. 1, 2013 at 13:42
Realhoneyman  Aug. 2, 2013 at 00:58

Well its kind of expected what with SONY joining the generational switch later this year. That plus they'll be supporting 3 formats at once when the PS4 is officially released and you can see they have a lot on their plate. Better being busy that way than being bored though, so to speak.

I get the feeling the VITA is turning out like the Neo Geo Pocket Colour (which I used to adore) but stands a greater chance of staying alive until either SONY announce its successor or they go back to integrating gaming into their series of phones. There are still good titles coming to the portable such as Killzone: Mercenary, Disgaea 4: Return, Rayman Legends, Telltale Games' The Walking Dead and God Eater 2 (if you care to import).

There are a bunch of titles that have already been released for the machine such as Persona 4: The Golden, Dead or Alive 5+, BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Extend, Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, Soul Sacrifice, UMVC3, Silent Hill: Book of Memories, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time, Gravity Rush, Street Fighter X Tekken, Jak and Daxter HD Collection, Virtue's Last Reward, LittleBigPlanet VITA, Metal Gear Solid HD Collection, Jet Set Radio, Senran Kagura Shinovi Versus: Shojo-tachi no Shomei and Time Travelers (again via import) to name a few.

With future integration into the PS4's functionality the VITA needs a severe push come the pre-Christmas period to make people excited about the machine again and greater continued support in Europe and the US. We continue to hear how the great the machine is from gamers, let's hear it more from SONY already for Christ's sake!

That list needs to grow bigger and bigger in 2014/2015. Make it a worthy competitor to the 3DS again please SONY.

Mini rant finished. I just want the machine to do well and show that Nintendo won't forever own the portable market. Maybe.

Last edited by Realhoneyman, Aug. 2, 2013 at 01:20


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