Live from the Motorola earnings conference
Back in 2007, Motorola had plans to split into two companies, one that concentrated on communications equipment and the other on cell phones. But that was before the global economic crisis, and now it must change course.
6:17am PT: Earlier in the call, Jha said that the Mobile Division will contain costs -- through reductions in its workforce in the first and second quarters, and by shrinking its manufacturing footprint -- while placing a "greater focus on quality."
Motorola's conference call with analysts concludes.
6:13am PT: Motorola will concentrate on reducing costs in the Mobile Division and on "discipline" in executing its strategy, according to the co-CEO.
Motorola will also defer any spin-off of the mobile phones business -- the area headed by Jha -- until after 2009, says Jha, a statement also echoed by other Motorola execs on the call.
6:10am PT: Suggesting that Motorola can't "fix" its Mobile Division, an analyst has asked whether Motorola will exit the mobile phones business. Jha says that there is commitment throughout the company to stay in mobile phones.
6:05am PT: "Sanjay is moving very promptly to turn [the Mobile Division] around," according to Brown.
6:01am PT: Motorola also plans to focus on "bringing data to the [middle] tiers." It will leverage its background in CDMA and Sprint/Nextel iDEN devices. But most development will focus on smartphones.
5:59am PT: In showing the phones to wireless carriers, "the feedback we're getting is that portfolio will be very competitive," Jha tells the analysts.
"One of the reasons we've liked Android is that we can differentiate," he says. Motorola doesn't have to build the underlying operating environment, according to Jha. However, it's based on the Java development environment Motorola is already accustomed to working with, and the company plans to create new Android applications in social networking, for example.
5:52am PT: Motorola will introduce several new Android phones by the fourth quarter of 2009, Jha affirms.
5:51am PT: But going forward, new product launches in Mobile Devices will be "fewer than in the past," and "much more focused on mid and high tiers," with an emphasis on data, according to Jha.
5:48am PT: During the fourth quarter, Motorola launched 15 new phones, including six GSM devices, one 3G device, three iDEN handsets, and five CDMA phones.
Then, at the CES show in January, Motorola rolled out three more handsets, including a "green" phone, notes Jha.
5:45am PT: Mobile Devices, though, showed an operating loss of $2.35 million, down 51 percent from the same quarter a year ago, says Sanjay Jha, co-CEO. The division felt an operating loss of $595 million.
5:42am PT: In Enterprise Mobility Solutions, operating earnings increased to $466 billion, a figure that's 3 percent higher than that of the fourth quarter for 2007, says Brown. Employees of the division should be "proud."
But Motorola will "aggressively manage costs throughout broadband, video, and mission-critical" areas of Enterprise Mobility Solutions. Motorola will close its biometrics division, he says.
5:35am PT: Motorola co-CEO Greg Brown has described results in the Home and Networks Mobility as "great." The company shipped 4.7 million digital entertainment devices, an increase of 1.3 million over the same quarter last year. Demand continues to grow for HD, D/DVR and IPTV devices. Motorola also continues to make progress in 4G WiMAX, says Brown.
5:21am PT: Motorola's fourth quarter earnings call has begun. For the fourth quarter, sales were $7.1 billion, with sales of $2.2 billion for Enterprise Mobility Division, $2.35 billion for Mobile Devices, and $2.6 billion for Home and Networks Mobility. The company shipped 19.2 million handsets.
Motorola expects to save $1.2 billion through cost cuts in the Mobile Device division over the next year, investors are told.
Motorola anticipates a first quarter loss of 10 to 12 cents per share. Beyond that, Motorola expects earnings to increase, in part because of cost savings such as Motorola's recent layoffs of 400,000.
Motorola's fourth quarter losses amounted to $1.57 per share.