HTC said it is expecting its first quarter sales to fall by as much as 36%, as it posted cautious targets for its new financial year.
The manufacturer posted a post-tax profit for 2011 of NT$61.98bn (£1.33bn), up 56.77% on the previous year. Sales were NT$465.79bn (£10.00bn), up 67.09% on 2010. For its fourth quarter, HTC posted post-tax profit of NT$10.94bn (£234.9m) and sales were NT$101.42bn (£2.17bn), down 2.48% year on year.
However, looking ahead to the first quarter of 2012, it predicted sales of NT$65-70bn. As Mobile revealed last month, HTC said it will put more marketing spend behind fewer products and drive value from these brands. It said: 'Despite temporary weakness resulting from product cycle transition, HTC believes it has the ability to create a new wave of momentum through the upcoming product cycle. It will also continue its attention on mass market consumers by driving product differentiation through design and innovation.'
HTC chief financial officer Winston Yung told a conference call of analysts: 'The sales we had originally expected for our high-end phones did not really materialise ... our product offering in the fourth quarter could have been better.'
HTC CEO Peter Chou [pictured] said: 'In 2011 we saw growth in the global strength of our brand, as well as earnings and revenue growth. While short-term performance may not meet the results as expected, we have gained further experience and advancement in the areas of brand management and product innovation. These fundamental strengths and the groundwork we have laid will take us into 2012 with a renewed focus and determination.'