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Mobile phone sales triple Motorola Q4 profit

Iridium still dragging it down, though

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Motorola yesterday cited cellphone sales as the foundation for the income growth of over 300 per cent it experienced during its fourth quarter. But for a one-off charge to cover the company's exposure to the much-troubled satellite mobile phone operation Iridium, the figure would have been much higher. So, after $740 million had been accounted for by Iridium, Motorola ended up with an operating profit of $514 million, well up on the $159 million it reported for the same period last year. Other exceptional items take the latest figure down to $349 million. Overall, the company's sales rose from $8.3 billion to $8.5 billion, a little over two per cent. Sales in the cellphone sector rose 13 per cent during the period, and accounted for $3.5 billion. Motorola's other key business, semiconductors, experience sales growth of 15 per cent, to $1.8 billion. Across the two sectors, orders were up 12 per cent and 24 per cent, to $3.6 billion and $2.0 billion, respectively. ®

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