Apple Supplier Foxconn’s Profit Gains Despite iPhone’s Sales Drop



Foxconn Technology

Group’s net profit rose 23.3% in the latest quarter, even as its biggest customer, Apple Inc., faced declining iPhone sales.

Taiwan-based Foxconn said Wednesday that net profit in the July-to-September period was 30.66 billion New Taiwan dollars (US$1.0 billion), higher than the NT$29.31 billion average estimate of analysts polled by FactSet. The company reported a net profit of NT$24.88 billion in the year-earlier quarter.

Revenue rose 0.9% to NT$1.39 trillion from NT$1.38 trillion.

Foxconn, known formally as

Hon Hai Precision Industry Co.

2317 -1.43%

, is the world’s largest contract electronics maker and assembles Apple’s iPhones, among other products, mostly in China. It relies on Apple for about half of its revenue, according to analyst estimates.

Apple’s iPhone sales have been slowing as customers hold on to smartphones longer and as competition increases from Chinese producers offering lower-price feature-rich handsets. Unlike some of its rivals, Apple isn’t planning to offer handsets compatible with next-generation 5G networks this year.

Employees working on an assembly line in the mobile phone plant of an Indian subsidiary of Foxconn.


Karen Dias/Bloomberg News

Apple said last month its iPhone sales dropped 9.2% in the three months ended Sept. 28. The company’s overall revenue rose 1.8%, as sales of wearable products such as smartwatches and services including apps, streaming-music subscriptions and mobile payments offset a decline in iPhone revenue.

However, Apple’s production forecast for the new iPhone 11 has been solid, according to people familiar with the matter. Apple priced the handset—the least expensive of three models the company launched in September—at $699. Apple priced the handset—the least expensive of three models the company launched in September—at $699.

Apple is also preparing to introduce a cheaper iPhone in the spring of 2020 with a liquid-crystal display and a home-button, people familiar with the matter said. In the fall of 2020, it is planning to roll out 5G handsets, said people familiar with Apple’s plans.

Apple didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Dow Jones & Co., publisher of The Wall Street Journal, has a commercial agreement to supply news through Apple services.

The escalating trade war between Washington and Beijing has prompted Apple and Foxconn to consider shifting some production out of China, though most of Apple’s bedrock products, including the iPhone, continue to be assembled in the country.

Made-in-China iPhones imported to the U.S. are set to be hit with a 15% tariff beginning Dec. 15. Other products including the Apple Watch have been subject to a 15% tariff since an earlier round of tariff hikes on Sept. 1.

Tariffs continue to be a major stumbling block in continuing efforts by the U.S. and China to reach a “phase one” trade deal. Last week, Beijing said the U.S. and China had both agreed to roll back their tit-for-tat tariffs as part of a limited deal. However, that statement was later contradicted by the Trump administration.

Write to Yoko Kubota at

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