Second quarter sales at the Siemens Mobile Group rose 14pc to €2.6bn, the company said this morning, with second quarter orders climbing 18pc to €2.7bn.
Within the Group, the Mobile Neworks division increased profits by 73pc to €76m, compared with €44m a year earlier, while the Mobile Phones division increased sales by 26pc and profits rose to €13m.
The volume of Siemens Mobile handsets rose from 8m units to 12.8m units in the same period a year earlier, representing a unit shipment growth of 60pc, the second highest in the industry. The company said that the average selling price remained stable compared to the first quarter of this fiscal year.
Brian McMenamin, business unit manager at Siemens Mobile Ireland, commented: “Siemens Mobile has placed itself firmly on a growth path in terms of both market share and innovation and is recording staggering results. We’re proud of the increasing contribution Ireland makes to global results and are determined to continue to increase our presence here in Ireland and worldwide.”
In an interview this morning with siliconrepublic.com, Jeremy Newing, North European marketing director for Siemens Information & Communications Mobile Devices, said that the company managed to weather the handset shortage crisis that gripped the mobile market at Christmas and dented sales by established industry leaders like Nokia. “It’s all down to forecasting. We were primarily successful in the UK and Ireland. Last Christmas the industry was given a reality check to sharpen up on forecasting. As well as this it demonstrated a greater need for a more transparent relationship between handset manufacturers and mobile network providers.”
Newing said that the industry discovered a strong demand for clamshell devices and slider phones rather than traditional ‘candy bar’ shaped phones, a factor that hurt Nokia, which was dismissive of clamshell designs. “Going forward the emphasis will be on camera phones with higher quality screens and images. The mobile phone is becoming more of a tool for life than for simply making calls, people are using it as a digital organizer for their personal and business lives. MMS has still to prove itself in the marketplace and I think its appeal will spread as the cost of sending MMS messages is reduced.”
Newing was tightlipped about Siemens’ plans for 3G but confirmed that a number of products are still under development and planned for release later in the year.
“There was always going to be a delay in consumer takeup of 3G. We are seeing a continued, but slow growth, particularly in the UK, as the share of 3G market is increasing. Bear in mind that most markets where 3G services are being launched are already very saturated. It is a question of being there when the time is right for people to move from 2.5G to 3G and that’s when the services are for them. When the services are fully there, people will migrate, especially when they see improved billing options from the operators,” Newing said.
In the coming months Siemens Mobile will be adding new handsets to its Irish portfolio, including the C65, the first entry-level photo-mobile to feature a high-resolution colour display, and the M65 which is the first water protected photo-mobile.
By John Kennedy