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Chip maker Toshiba raised its forecasts for the first half of the fiscal year after the firm enjoyed strong sales in the quarter ending 30 June.

The Japanese firm's net profits surged to ¥20.6bn (€126.8m) for the first quarter from ¥4bn (€24.9m) for the same period last year. This represent earnings per share of ¥5.92 (€0.04) for the period, up from ¥1.16 (€0.01) for the first quarter of last year.

Toshiba's sales rose 15 per cent to ¥1.66 trillion (€10.2bn), while operating profit rose 1.6 per cent to ¥21.2bn (€130.5m) in the quarter.

The Japanese chip maker raised its fiscal first-half net profit forecast to ¥40bn (€246.3m), up considerably from its April projection of ¥10bn (€61.6m). Toshiba expects sales for the half to reach ¥3.6 trillion (€22.2bn), compared with April's estimate of ¥3.5 trillion (€21.6bn). Operating profit is expected to hit ¥70bn (€431.2m), ahead of an earlier estimate for ¥40bn (€246.3m).

The firm cited accelerating growth in its PC business and anticipated growth from its semiconductor division as the primary causes for the revised figures. Earlier this week ENN reported that Toshiba enjoyed solid growth in PC shipments in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Toshiba maintained fifth place overall in the table, which is headed by HP, according to analysts IDC.

The profits were also somewhat inflated by Toshiba completing the sale of its stake in Toshiba-EMI to the EMI Group in June. The Japanese firm made a profit of ¥12.7bn (€78.2m) on the sale of its 45 per cent stake in the firm.

Toshiba kept its full-year net income target unchanged at ¥120bn (€739.1m). Toshiba's president Furnio Muraoka told a press conference that the full year figures may yet bet revised. "We are reviewing and recalculating our full-year projections, and will announce new forecasts at a later date," said Muraoka.

Despite the impressive performance shares in the Japanese firm fell 3.1 per cent to ¥1,115 (€6.87) on the Tokyo Stock Exchange on Friday, though the stock has gained 44 per cent this year.

© 2007 ENN

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