LG has released its latest quarterly results, and you're never going to guess what happened. It's getting to be an old story at this point: LG makes money, but the smartphone segment drags it down. That's the case with LG's latest Q1 2019 results.
The headlining number is an operating profit of KRW 900.6 billion (USD 801.25 million) on sales of KRW 14.92 trillion (USD 13.27 billion). That's not bad, but it's a 20% drop from last year at this time. LG saw strong performance from its home appliance division, which hit a record high profit of KRW 727.6 billion (USD 647.3 million). A few other divisions pulled in solid cash, although the home entertainment group slid a few percent.
The real problem at LG (and the one we talk about most often) is LG Mobile Communications. This part of the company has been losing money on smartphones for a long time. LG Mobile saw Q1 sales of KRW 1.51 trillion (USD 1.34 billion), but it lost KRW 203.5 billion (USD 181.05 million). While this is a smaller loss than last quarter, it's still about 30% higher than Q1 2018. This makes eight consecutive quarterly losses for LG's mobile division.
On the allegedly bright side, LG says it sees brighter times ahead with the launch of its first 5G smartphone (the V50). It believes that will give its mobile group some momentum going forward as it tries to claw its way back to profitability.