Following strong Q4 figures, bullish analysts predict Samsung could ship 170 million smartphones in 2012
Up from around 95 million in 2011
Underlining its position as the top smartphone vendor, Samsung (005930.KS) has announced its preliminary Q4 figures.
Sales across its entire business - ranging from shipbuilding and construction to phones, and components such as chips, DRAM and displays - during the three month period were estimated at 47 trillion won (around $40.5 billion).
Operating profit was 5.2 trillion Won (around $4.5 billion), with a margin of error of +/- $170 million.
This includes some one-off items such as the sale of its hard drive business to Seagate for $1.4 billion.
The company will provide finalised figures later in January, which will break out individual divisions such as Samsung Electronics, which contains its phone operations.
Smartphones are currently the most profitable part of Samsung's business.
The company is expected to have shipped around 35 million smartphones during Q4, with some analysts predicting it could sell 170 million units during 2012. It's thought it shipped around 95 million devices in 2011.
"As expectations for Apple to continue its innovation trail is receding a bit, this will be the year when Samsung solidifies its commanding lead in the smartphone market," said Kim Yun-sang, a fund manager at IBK Asset Management, which owns Samsung stock.
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