Sony expected to post operating profit for 2009

Nikkei says LCD TVs, cost cuts push maker into the black

BANGALORE, India -- Sony Corp. is expected to post an operating profit for fiscal 2009, its first in two years, on strong LCD television sales and cost-cuts, the Nikkei business daily said.

The company saw healthy sales of low-cost LCD TVs for the Chinese market, and in Japan, LCD TV sales likely came in just short of 16 million units, topping a target for 15 million, the Nikkei said.

The company, which competes with the likes of Sharp and Samsung Electronics, suffered an operating loss of 227.7 billion yen ($2.42 billion) in fiscal 2008, the newspaper said.

Sony has lowered parts and other purchasing expenses by around 500 billion yen a year as part of its efforts to pare costs, the paper said.

British cellular phone unit Sony Ericsson Communications AB is also expected to post a net profit for the January-March quarter, its first in seven quarters, Nikkei said.

On April 30, Samsung, the world's top maker of memory chips and flat screen TVs, said it expects its chips and TV businesses to lead to record results in the second quarter.