Panasonic to stop selling smartphones in Europe

Japanese electronics maker consolidates operations after $8.5 billion net loss

Panasonic has decided to stop selling its Eluga smartphone in Europe, the only market outside of Japan where it sells smartphones, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal.

Panasonic just began selling its Eluga phone in Europe in April of this year, and plans to wrap things up in Europe by March.

The Eluga, designed for the European market, is a 4.3-inch Android handset. It is waterproof and dustproof and has a 960x540 px high-definition touchscreen display.

The move is part of an effort by the Japanese electronics maker to streamline its unprofitable operations following an $8.5 billion net loss in the company's latest quarter.

The firm saw a 12 percent decline in sales for its systems and communications business, which includes mobile phones, multifunction ringers and private branch exchange products. The segment posted a loss of $125 million due to the decreased sales.

The company said it would reorganize its Panasonic Mobile Communications subsidiary, splitting off its mobile phone base station business from its handset manufacturing business.

Japan's electronics manufacturers are having trouble gaining a foothold in the overseas smartphone market and are even losing market share to foreign firms, such as Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Samsung.

For more:
- see the WSJ article
- see Panasonic's financial results

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