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Fujitsu Builds on Data Center Success

Fujitsu Ltd. (OTC: FJTSY; Tokyo: 6702) unveiled its first-quarter results today, posting a net loss of 4.3 billion (US$40 million). However, this was a big improvement on the ¥37.8 billion ($352 million) operating loss posted in the same period last year.

The company’s consolidated net loss for the first quarter was ¥11.8 billion ($109 million) compared to ¥39.8 billion ($368 million) recorded in the first quarter of 2003. Fujitsu execs blamed the losses on a number of factors, including intense competition for software and services in the Japanese market.

Like a number of hardware vendors, Fujitsu has had a tough ride over recent months and was forced to restructure much of its business last year.

But it was not all bad news in today’s results. Fujitsu’s net sales in its platforms business, which includes data center hardware, were ¥359.4 billion ($3.3 billion), an increase of 15.1 percent on the same period last year. According to Fujitsu execs, the company was able to narrow its losses thanks to strong enterprise sales of Unix servers and mainframes.

Not surprisingly, the data center is a major target for Fujitsu at the moment. Last week Chiaki Ito, the company’s corporate executive vice president, unveiled plans to expand utility computing offerings. This involves expanding Fujitsu’s open systems business and "autonomic computing," the somewhat ill-defined term for self-managing computer systems.

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