Japanese Big Three Home Appliances Turn Over: Sharp or the Toughest

Japanese Big Three Home Appliances Turn Over: Sharp or the Toughest

For Japanese home appliance giants, the huge loss means that once glorious days have passed.

In the 2011 fiscal year performance forecast, Panasonic, Sony, and Sharp suffered a collective “Waterloo” with a total loss of US$17 billion.

The industrial layout, adjustment strategies, and the competitive environment of the three home appliance companies in the low-lying Chinese households have determined that they face different circumstances. According to the Q1 quarterly report for fiscal 2012, Panasonic made a difficult single-quarter turnaround with structural adjustments such as costly layoffs and reduced costs, while Sony and Sharp still struggled on the loss line.

The common problem faced by the three companies is that the living room is in defeat. On the one hand, fragmented entertainment time has weakened people's demand for large-size flat-panel TVs; on the other hand, South Korean or Chinese competitors have seized market share at a lower cost. Therefore, among the top three, the more intimidated people in the field of LCD TVs, the harder to extricate themselves.

Panasonic launched a comprehensive counterattack on July 31. Matsushita Electric issued a performance report in the first quarter of fiscal year 2012 (April-June) that net profit amounted to 12.8 billion yen from the third quarter of fiscal 2010 (October- For the first time since December, the overall deficit turned black, turning losses into profits.

Despite Panasonic Q1's losses, but household appliance industry observer Liang Zhenpeng still expressed concern about its continued profitability: Panasonic can achieve its first loss, and this year in the world on several large-scale layoffs, shut down production lines and factories, such as production cuts. Inseparable.

Panasonic did not shy away. "The substantial increase in operating profit was due to the implementation of structural reforms and reductions in fixed costs."

For Panasonic, it is very difficult to recover the defeat, but every decision maker has not stopped its reform and transformation, trying to reverse the unfavorable situation.

As early as the late 1990s, Matsushita, the world’s largest household appliance company, began to show a declining trend. In March 2002, it was the first loss and huge deficit in 23 years. Since the inauguration of President Hiroshi Ohira in 2006, he has also made a strategic decision after gradually recognizing the situation. That is, the company has established a new system to implement a downsizing plan for television production and semiconductor business with a small contribution to profits, and to focus on solar power generation and onboard vehicles. Lithium battery production, battery systems, LED lighting, smart city overall solutions and other high-growth business.

Li Qiuwei, deputy general manager of Ovi Consulting Industry Center, once said that Japanese companies want to maintain high-margin business, usually with a gross margin of about 30%. In Japan, with respect to the requirements related to panel manufacturing, its factory buildings are more restricted and the cost of land is more expensive than other places. To maintain high gross profit, companies will have to give up the business with excessive manufacturing costs and choose to “slim down” to energy. Business is a good thing for Panasonic.

In the process of transformation, enterprises will inevitably suffer the painful process. After several rounds of large-scale layoffs, business restructurings, and strategic adjustments, President Tai-Ping Wenxiong estimated at Panasonic’s general meeting of shareholders on June 27 that within two years Panasonic’s TV business would be able to emerge from its predicament.

Matsushita, which achieved Q1 losses, stated that its future business objectives will be to review the company's products from the perspective of consumers. In terms of business management, it will also be conducted from the business sector to the business unit. , and implement bolder resource conversions and more detailed risk management than ever before, and all business activities must thoroughly advance faster cash flow management.

Sony may decide to win games and mobile devices. On August 2, Sony announced its first-quarter financial report for fiscal year 2012, with a net loss of 24.6 billion yen, and lowered its net profit forecast for the current fiscal year.

According to Dominic Tang, an economist at a consulting firm in the United States, competition in the electronics industry continues to intensify as companies such as Apple and Samsung continue to innovate. Faced with such a challenging market environment, Sony's leadership is relatively conservative, and major asset restructurings and acquisitions have barely been achieved.

In the Sony Q1 report, TV sales for the current fiscal year are lowered from 17.5 million units to 15.5 million units, camera sales are reduced from 21 million units to 18 million units, and PC sales are reduced from 10 million units to 9.2 million units. Sales of smart phones rose from 33.30 million units to 34 million units.

DominicTang expressed his understanding of Sony's actions. He believes that Sony's reduction of television production is a wise choice. First of all, the television industry is already the world of Samsung. In addition, there is no connection between the television and the remaining production lines of Sony. Therefore, it is not worth focusing on research and development in terms of technology. Sony PC prices are too high, although the design is good, but no better than the Mac. If you cannot reduce costs and prices, PC development will be difficult. The rest is a smart phone. This is a very dangerous area. Currently Samsung, Apple, and HTC, other brands are not outstanding. How does Sony compete? One is to add Playstation elements to mobile phones; the other is to study reducing costs and changing market positioning. Because the iPhone and Galaxy are all competing in the high-end market, it is difficult for Sony to have a place to stay.

DominicTang said that Sony needs to focus on the area should have three characteristics: First, one of Sony's several large plates (games, mobile phones, laptops, digital imaging), and second, this field must have the integration of other existing Sony production lines The third possibility is that the market competition in this field cannot be too intense. For now, Dominic Tang believes that the effective integration of electronic products and Playstation's resources and technologies may be a breakthrough.

In April this year, Kazuo Hirai reorganized Sony's unprofitable TV business after taking over as CEO of Sony and laid off 10,000 employees, realizing the company’s renaissance by focusing on gamers, digital imaging and mobile devices.

DominicTang said, "What Sony needs is to change its face. As for what to focus on, personally think it will be games and mobile devices."

Sharp LCD industry originator trapped sharp industrial chain new "fist" where?

In Sharp's worst-history loss in last fiscal year, operating losses reached 94.1 billion yen in the first quarter of 2012 as of June 30, compared with a profit of 3.5 billion yen in the same period of last year.

According to media reports, Chairman of the Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as Hon Hai Precision) Chairman Gou Ting Ming said on August 5th that Sharp’s former president and current consultant, Machida Katsuhiko, proposed last week to re-negotiate the price of Hon Hai Precision shares in Sharp. .

It is reported that Sharp's share price has fallen by nearly 65% ​​since the acquisition intention was announced on March 7, and the share price of Hon Hai is also lower due to the joint effect of Sharp's intention to invest.

Betting big screen "resurrection plan"

For Sharp, how to find the right external resources to solve the heavy financial burden and improve the tenth-generation line capacity utilization is a very important two topics, and it eventually found Hon Hai.

According to statistics, Hon Hai invested 66.4 billion yen (about 800 million U.S. dollars) in the Sharp Tenth Generation Line (currently a subsidiary of Sharp Display Products). As a conditional exchange, Hon Hai will also obtain half of Sharp's tenth-generation line capacity. At the same time, Sharp will increase the proportion of Foxconn's TV OEM business.

This is not Sharp's first cooperation with Hon Hai. In July 2011, the two companies signed a strategic cooperation agreement and cooperated in LCD TV panel technology. Sharp authorized Foxconn’s panel maker Xinqimei’s perspective on wide viewing angle and high penetration. Rate process technology. Sharp also plans to purchase 32-inch and larger panels from New Chi Mei, while Sharp's eight-generation line will be more focused on high-end Mobile PCs, while the Ten-Gen line will focus on over 60-inch oversized panel production.

According to Sharp's big screen policy, 60-80 inches is the focus of its sales, and sales channels are also expanding from home to commercial. Sharp China said that in addition to the coastal areas, Sharp will vigorously expand the market in the central and western regions this year, hoping that the proportion of TVs with more than 60 inches in Sharp China TV sales will increase from 6.5% in 2011 to 20% in 2012.

Regarding Sharp's strategy of “not doing full-scale, mainly relying on large-scale production”, Jin Xiaofeng, deputy general manager of AVC Consulting, believes that the strategy is very clear, but the large-size market is still under cultivation, so Sharp has to continue Do more intense 32-inch, 40-inch LCD TVs.

According to the monthly data of AVC Consulting, Sharp's Q1 sales in the Chinese market accounted for 2.84%, and the sales amount accounted for 6.08%; Q2 sales accounted for 3.61%, and the sales amount accounted for 7.32%;

In order to cope with the poor performance, Sharp will strengthen the operating rate and utilization rate of the factory and small and medium-sized LCD panel factories in Handan (Osaka, Japan). In addition, Sharp said that it will reduce personnel costs, depreciation and amortization and other fixed costs.

Sharp will also reorganize and integrate four major business systems: home appliances and communications, health, environmental and energy solutions, office equipment and solutions, and components.

Compared with Sharp LCD TV products, the size of the empty ice wash is smaller. For Sharp's white goods: air conditioners, refrigerators and washing machines, many consumers do not know.

According to the previous statement by Kennobu Iwino, Sharp's white goods did not develop targetedly according to the Chinese market, which may be difficult to respond to changes in the needs of Chinese consumers. At present, Sharp has newly established the Health and Environment Business Division, which is mainly responsible for white power and hopes to adapt to the Chinese market from the institutional changes.

AVC monthly data show that, in terms of air-conditioning business, Sharp's 2011 sales market accounted for 0.01%; in the first half of 2012, it still maintained 0.01%. Panasonic’s market share in 2011 was 2.10%; sales volume in the first half of 2012 remained at 2.12%. In the washing machine business, Sharp's sales in 2011 accounted for 0.03%; in the first half of 2012, it remained at 0.03%. Panasonic's sales in 2011 accounted for 10.86%; in the first half of 2012, it was 9.18%. In the refrigerator business, Sharp's sales in 2011 accounted for 0.08%; in the first half of 2012, it was 0.10%. Panasonic's sales in 2011 accounted for 2.66%; in the first half of 2012, it was 2.12%.

According to Han Wei, deputy general manager of AVC's white power division, although Sharp's white goods have entered the Chinese market somewhat late, there should be many considerations for their own development.

Han Hao said, "First of all, channels may want Sharp to have a more comprehensive category of products to facilitate sales; Second, from the perspective of making money from itself, Sharp has a profit level comparable to LCD, even though the overall scale is not large enough. TV products will be higher."

According to Han Hong, Sharp currently only covers three places in the north and the north, and has not yet reached three or four cities. It is very difficult to make the scale.

Is it too late to return to the layout of the phone?

The cooperation between Sharp and Hon Hai will not stop at the fund level. Both parties may first cooperate in the field of mobile phones.

Sharp China said that through cooperation with Hon Hai, it will further increase its cost competitiveness, and on the premise of guaranteeing quality, it will achieve small profits and quick sales of best-selling products. Starting from 2013, based on a common platform and a common factory, Hon Hai’s procurement capabilities will be fully utilized and multiple models of competitive models will be introduced to multiple operators.

Even so, when he was interviewed by the media, Tatsuno still had confidence in his smart phone products. Kanno said that Sharp will optimize the Android system in the smart phone field, using its own design of the user interface and design, and Hon Hai will be responsible for the deployment of spare parts. The latter's "low purchasing power and productivity" will enhance the smartphone's Cost advantage. Sharp's goal is to achieve an annual sales of 10 million smart phones in China.

Analysys International analyst Wang Ying believes that although Sharp launched a smart phone in due course, its smart phone's price positioning is still very high, basically more than 3,000 yuan, this price is obviously unable to match Apple, Samsung and other similar types of price products Brand competition. In addition, Sharp's smart phone screen is significantly smaller, and it follows the style of Japanese and Korean clamshell phones, which does not meet the current needs of Chinese consumers.

Wang Ying said that this is not a problem for the Sharp family. Japanese handsets have not performed well in the overall Chinese market. In addition to the late entry and small scale, it is also related to Japan's C network. Japan is dominated by C-net. China's development of C-net is relatively late, and C-net users are relatively few. In addition, when Japanese mobile phones enter the Chinese market, in addition to the need for approval, there is a process of internal product adjustment, coupled with its high price (high cost of C-network mobile phones), eventually leading to a lagging state of Japanese mobile phones.

Industry Watching the Living Room Loss: Japanese Television The sleepy TV was once called the "magic" box. From the 1980s onwards, watching TV was almost the most important entertainment activity for every family. Today, televisions are still placed in the center of the living room, but the core position in the home appliances has been declining.

Due to the rapid development of the Internet, many young people are more willing to use computers and smart phones to get advice. They are not watching television at home. According to industry insiders, TV has become an auxiliary medium for young people. The dream of Japanese home appliance giants trying to reverse their financial losses through the television business may be difficult to achieve.

NPDDisplaySearch's latest global TV shipment and forecast quarterly report shows that in 2012, total TV shipments will be down 1.4% from last year to 245 million units, while LCD TV shipments are expected to be 216 million units, an increase of 5 %, lower than the 7% increase last year.

Paul Gagnon, Director of North American Television Research at NPDDisplaySearch, stated that “because of the slowdown in global TV demand, apart from the factors of economic instability in many regions, there is another reason that many LCD TV supply chain manufacturers pay more attention to profits, slowing the rate of price decline and generating sales. Had a direct impact."

According to a recent Nielsen survey, the time spent by young Americans watching television is gradually decreasing. They are more inclined to watch television programs on other terminals. The number of people using a tablet computer to watch TV and video programs worldwide has doubled over the same period of last year. In addition to televisions, more than 70% of consumers prefer to watch video programs through other devices. According to NPDDisplaySearch, the number of consumers using their tablets to watch TV and video shows has more than doubled. This increase is inextricably linked to the increasing market share of tablets.

According to industry sources, according to the current situation, the slowdown in global TV demand will continue. Due to the impact of the big environment, TV demand in the Chinese market will also slow down. Compared to the rapid transition of Chinese home appliance manufacturers in a timely manner, Japanese household appliance giants are obviously in a weak position in the game with Chinese home appliance manufacturers. Among Japanese household electrical appliance giants, Sharp, the single core business, fell into the deepest quagmire compared to Panasonic and Sony.

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