Despite continuing jokes about last year’s hottest product, the Galaxy Note 7, and having a key executive jailed amidst a scandal investigation, Samsung announced in earnings guidance that for the first quarter of 2017 the company had sales of approximately 50 trillion won ($44 billion USD) which helped drive operating income to 9.9 trillion won ($8.7 billion). These results are the best for Samsung since the third quarter of 2013. Analysts believe the growth was driven by sales of semiconductors and OLED displays.
The preliminary numbers that were released exceeded analysts estimates of 9.1 trillion won for profit and 49.5 trillion won for sales. Claire Kim with Daishin Securities Co. noted, “the second quarter should be better, given it’s the doorway to a high-demand season.” The demand could be fueled by Samsung’s launch of the Galaxy S8 which comes after the close of the first quarter. Samsung is hoping the Galaxy S8 will put to rest the negative impact of the Note 7 debacle and help the company restore itself to a position of prominence in the smartphone market.
Samsung stock prices have risen by 16 percent since the beginning of the year despite the company not having a major smartphone launch during the quarter. That points to the strength of the diversification of the company’s business lines. Net income and detailed information on performance of the different business segments will be available later this month.