Samsung Electronics Co lost $12 billion in market value on Friday, hit by brokerage downgrades that have underscored concerns about slowing sales of its flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone.
The share slide of more than 6 percent comes after it recently introduced two stripped-down versions of the S4, fanning worries that profit margins for its mobile business will suffer. It also follows a report that arch-rival Apple will begin a trade-in programme for iPhones.
Analysts say sales momentum for the high-end version of the S4, which became its fastest selling smartphone since it launch in late April, has slowed.
"Sales of high-end handsets are lagging behind expectations, while low- to mid-end handsets are selling briskly worldwide," said Kim Young-chan, an analyst at Shinhan Investment Corp.
"As the portion of low- to mid-range handsets is expected to increase in Samsung's overall mobile phone business, this has also sparked concerns about thinning margins and lower growth."
Analysts also expect " with With Apple widely expected to announce an older iPhone trade-in programme and also a new cheaper iPhone, overall growth prospects for Samsung's smartphone business might be affected . Mobile Phones has shown brisk sales in the last 5 years and the business is going through a reality check after the unprecedented upside in Business