Samsung Electronics Co Ltd reported a 51% rise in quarterly profit on Thursday, posting its highest first-quarter profit since 2018 as robust data centre demand for high-margin memory chips underpinned chip prices.

Operating profit rose to 14.1 trillion won ($11.1 billion) for the quarter ended March 31 from 9.38 trillion won a year earlier, the world's top maker of memory chips said. That was in line with the company's own estimate of 14.1 trillion won earlier this month.

Revenue rose 19% to a record 77.8 trillion won.

Analysts said Samsung's recent focus on selling more high-margin memory products to prioritise profitability over volume would ultimately limit shipments and help boost DRAM prices later in the year, as would the limited increases in chip production capacity due to delivery delays in chipmaking gear.

($1 = 1,266.2800 won)

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Samsung Electronics
The logo of Samsung Electronics is seen at its office building in Seoul, South Korea South Korea, October 11, 2017. Photo: Reuters / Kim Hong-Ji