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RCA Press Release for January 21, 1981


RCA Reports Record Sales and Earnings in 1980; Fourth Quarter Results Also Reach New High

RCA earnings reached a new high in 1980 for the fourth consecutive year, Chairman Edgar H. Griffiths announced today.

Sales for the year and sales and earnings for the fourth quarter also set new records, Mr. Griffiths said. He noted that it was the first time that sales for any year in the company's 61 year history surpassed the $8 billion mark and that sales for any quarter exceeded the $2 billion level

Net income for the full year 1980 rose 11 percent to a record $315.3 million, equal to $3.35 per common share, from $283.8 million, or $3.72 per share in 1979. Sales increased 7 percent to a new high of $ 8.01 billion from $ 7.45 billion.

Earnings for the three months ended December 31, 1980 rose 13 percent, reaching a new fourth quarter high of $79.1 million, or 82 cents per share, compared with $70.1 million or 92 cents per share in the same period a year earlier. Sales for the fourth quarter were at a new peak of $2.09 billion, an increase of 5 percent over $1.98 billion a year ago.

The 1980 results include earnings on an equity basis of C.I.T. Financial Corporation, which became an RCA subsidiary on January 31, 1980. RCA earnings per share in 1980, exclusive of the effects of the merger with C.I.T., ran below a year ago because of higher interest costs, higher research and development commitments and start-up costs involved in the "SelectaVision" VideoDisc program.

Also included in the 1980 results is a gain from the sale of Random House, insurance proceeds from the loss of Satcom III, and the loss resulting from the curtailment of NBC's coverage of the 1980 Olympics in Moscow. These special items increased earnings a net amount of $14.5 million. In 1979, special items increased earnings by $29.8 million related to a gain on the sale of RCA Alaska Communications and a one-time United Kingdom tax benefit.

During the latter part of 1980, Mr. Griffiths said, RCA adopted a plan to divest certain of its operations that are peripheral to those lines of businesses on which RCA intends to concentrate in the future. The Divestment Program includes primarily those operations recently sold and those RCA expects to sell during 1981. "We believe the program will result in a net profit to the company which will not be recognized until the program is substantially complete," Mr. Griffiths said.

Mr. Griffiths reported that in 1980 strong performances were turned in by the Consumer Electronics Division, Picture Tube Division, Government and Commercial Systems, Solid State Division, C.I.T., RCA American Communications, RCA Global Communications, RCA Records and the RCA Service Company.

Although earnings of Hertz and NBC declined for the year, the subsidiaries continued to be two of the biggest profit contributors to the corporation, Mr. Griffiths said. He noted that earnings for NBC would have been higher than a year ago if it were not for the Olympics' write-off.

He said, "New records were achieved in 1980 despite increased operating costs resulting from high interest rates and substantial investments in research and development and in the new 'SelectaVision' VideoDisc project."

The video disc system is on schedule for a national introduction by 5,000 dealers on March 22, Mr. Griffiths said. "It represents a significant RCA achievement -- from research and development to production and marketing."


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