Ericsson rings up huge losses in 2017

Ericsson rings up huge losses in 2017

Swedish telecoms giant Ericsson said Wednesday that it rang up huge losses last year as network competition, restructuring costs and investment in lightning-fast 5G technology pushed it deeply into the red.

Ericsson said in a statement it booked net loss of 35.1 billion kronor (3.6 billion euros, $4.4 billion) in 2017, compared with profit of 1.9 billion kronor the year before.

The group also booked an underlying or operating loss of 38.1 billion kronor last year after profit of 6.3 billion kronor in 2016, while revenues dropped by 10 percent to 201.3 billion kronor, the statement said.

“The focus during 2017 has been on reshaping overall strategy and on improving company structure and performance,” explained chief executive Borje Ekholm.

“2017 was also the year when 5G went from vision to real business opportunities while we at the same time had good traction for our 4G portfolio,” he continued.

“We are fully committed to our plans and our targets and expect to see tangible results of our turnaround in 2018.”

In the fourth quarter alone, Ericsson’s net loss widened to 18.9 billion kronor from a loss of 1.6 billion kronor a year earlier, while sales slumped by 12 percent to 57.2 billion kronor.

“The fourth quarter was in line with our overall expectation, with gradual improving performance in networks and continued significant losses in digital services. The result is however far below our long-term ambition,” CEO Ekholm said.


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