Sony Group Corp. has warned a group of analysts that the PlayStation 5 will remain in short supply until 2022, suggesting the company will be limited in its ability to increase sales targets for its latest gaming console.
While releasing its financial results in late April, the Japanese conglomerate said it had sold 7.8 million units of the console through March 31, and it is aiming to sell at least 14.8 million units during the current fiscal year. This would allow it to follow the trajectory of the popular PlayStation 4, which has sold over 115.9 million units to date.
In a briefing after the results, Sony told analysts it was difficult to keep up with high demand. The PS5 has been difficult to find in stock since its release in November, in part due to shortages of components such as semiconductors, and the company has not given an official estimate of when it expects it to be. what the supply is normalizing.
“I don’t think demand will calm down this year and even though we secure a lot more devices and produce a lot more PlayStation 5 units next year, our supply might not meet demand,” he said. said the CFO. Hiroki Totoki said during the briefing, according to several people who were present and asked not to be named because it was not public.
A Sony spokesperson declined to comment.
Sony said it would buy back until 200 billion yen ($ 1.8 billion) from its own shares after reporting profits for the March quarter that were lower than analysts’ estimates. He expected operating profit to fall by around 4% in the current fiscal year, but analysts wondered if the company could beat the conservative outlook thanks to strong demand for the new console and games. .
Shares have fallen about 8% since the April 28 earnings report, after rising 75% from a year earlier.
Learn more about Sony’s plans for the coming year.
Totoki told analysts that Sony needs to ramp up production as soon as possible and make sure there are consoles on store shelves. Demand will remain high regardless of the Covid-19 situation, CFO assured an analyst wary of Sony’s ability to take full advantage of the home entertainment surge triggered by lockdowns and emergency orders .
“We have sold over 100 million units of PlayStation 4 and given our market share and our reputation, I can’t imagine the demand going down easily,” he said.
Still, the company’s latest earnings report suggests that demand to stay at home is leveling off. Sony said monthly active users on the PlayStation Network fell to 109 million at the end of the January-March period, from 114 million a quarter earlier, and full game sales also declined in the period of time. ‘one year earlier.
RivalNintendo Co. warned last week that component shortages could affect production. It is officially targeting sales of 25.5 million consoles in the year ending March 2022, down slightly from the previous year. But internally, Nintendo’s management is reportedly filming for production between 28 and 29 million consoles, Bloomberg News reported.