Mobile phone sales triple Motorola Q4 profit

Iridium still dragging it down, though

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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