Panasonic earnings down as surging Tesla battery costs hurt profit
Panasonic suffered a 15 per cent profit dip in the second quarter thanks to its investment in Tesla's battery business, the Japanese firm revealed today.
The technology giant's disappointing profit yield saw it take ¥95.2bn ($840.9m) between July and September, down on the 112.7bn yen it took for the same period a year ago.
The company blamed the drop on the company's investment in Tesla, for which Panasonic jointly produces batteries at the electric carmaker's so-called Gigafactory in Nevada.
This battery business has incurred losses for the second consecutive quarter, amounting to ¥7.3bn (£50.5m), amid rising production costs and flat Chinese demand amid deteriorating China-US trade relations.
However, Panasonic's share price rose nearly two per cent.
Chief executive Kazuhiro Tsuga revealed today that he had been worried about Tesla's eccentric boss Elon Musk's unpredictable behaviour, but that he had taken relief in the fact that Musk's antics – such as smoking weed during an interview – hadn't impacted the electric car manufacturer's business.
Last week, Tesla reported its largest ever net profit of $312m (£244.4m) and a positive cash flow.