LG Electronics reported a successful year in 2020, largely resulting from higher sales of premium home appliances and its OLED TVs.

LG Electronics’ Q4-2020 financial report, released late last week, showed the company garnered revenue of KRW 63.26 trillion ($56.45 billion) while achieving record-setting operating profit of KRW 3.20 trillion ($2.85 billion), up 31% over 2019.

The company benefited significantly from global shelter-in-place and remote work imperatives — particularly coming from North America and Europe — that resulted in increased demand for higher-end home appliances and 4K OLED TVs, LG said.

The company said the home appliance business recorded sales in the fourth quarter of KRW 18.78 trillion ($16.76 billion) up 16.9% from the same period of 2019 and up 11% from the previous quarter.

Despite the impact of COVID-19, operating profit in the quarter was KRW 650.20 billion ($580.19 million), up a whopping 539% over the same period in 2019.

LG said COVID-19 and slow economic recovery continue to be concerns that could impact 2021 results, but the company expects the global economy to normalize as vaccinations are implemented and world government policies are maintained. In 2021, LG expects its core technologies including AI, 5G, IoT and mobility to be widely applied across its business sectors.

LG Electronic’s home entertainment business reported 2020 revenue of KRW 13.18 trillion ($11.76 billion) and operating profit of KRW 969.70 billion ($865.29 million), a 22.9 percent increase over the previous year. Sales in the quarter of KRW 4.28 trillion ($3.82 billion) were 7.9% higher than the fourth quarter of 2019 and up 16.7% from the previous quarter. The company said its quarterly operating profit of KRW 204.50 billion ($182.48 million) were driven by increased sales in North America and Europe.

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LG said it also benefited from liquid crystal display (LCD) panel prices, which increased in the fourth quarter of 2020.

At the same time, the company’s mobile business posted a 248.5 billion won operating loss, making the 23rd consecutive quarterly operating loss from the sector. LG attributed some of the loss to a decline in premium smartphones sales and trouble procuring chip-sets for 4G phones.

The vehicle solutions sector also a 2 billion won operating loss, in part, as the result of COVID-19, although LG said demand started to recover in the second half of 2020.

For 2021, the company said it will be focused on maintaining revenue growth and profitability by expanding sales of premium products such as OLED, NanoCell and large-size TVs.

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By Greg Tarr

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