While Sony Corp. had a tough year, losing 128.4 billion yen ($1.25 billion) on sales of 7.77 trillion yen ($75.5 billion), the company's music and visual media operations held its own, posting an operation income of $488 million on sales of $4.89 billion. That compares with operating income of $361.8 million on sales of $4.3 billion.
While sales increased 13.8%, that was primarily due to the favorable impact of the depreciation of the yen against the U.S. dollar. On a constant currency bases, revenues were essentially flat.
Operating income increased even more dramatically, likewise due to favorable currency exchange rates, but also attributable to an improvement in equity in net income from affiliated companies like EMI Music Publishing, which Sony Corp. owns a 38% stake in.
Within the division, recorded music sales declined due to a contraction of the Japanese music market. But when the company added that music publishing and its visual media platform (visual media and platform includes various service offerings for music and visual products and the production and disribution of animation titles) revenues increased. Its recorded music operations of Sony Music Entertainment and Sony Music Japan accounted for $3.4 billion; Sony Music Publishing had revenues of $650 million; the visual media and platform segment had revenues of $753.8 million, plus there was about $109 million in intersegment revenue.
Sony Music's Best-selling titles in the current fiscal year included One Direction’s "Midnight Memories," Daft Punk’s "Random Access Memories," Beyoncé’s self-titled album and Miley Cyrus’ "Bangerz."
Going forward, the company projects that for the next fiscal year, its music divisions sales will be flat, while operating income will decrease due to increased restructuring charges. The company projects that sales will be flat nd operating income will fall $21 million to $467 million due to softening Japanese music market and an increase in restructuring charges.
Last year, that division experienced $5.6 million in restructuring charges and associated depreciation as opposed to $24.5 million in the prior year.