Sony Corp. on Thursday said chairman Kazuo Hirai, who helped engineer the electronics giant’s recent revival, will retire in June, bowing out as the Japanese company is on track for another record profit this year.
CEO Kazuo Hirai, who hasn’t spoken about publicly about the hack before, opened a press event at the International CES trade show in Las Vegas by saying he “would be remiss” if he didn’t mention the controversy over the Sony comedy, The Interview. Hirai did not offer any new information about the hack, but said Monday evening that freedom of speech and expression are “very important” to Sony and its entertainment business.
TOKYO (AP) — Sony shareholders voted Thursday to keep Chief Executive Kazuo Hirai and other top executives after heckling them about the Japanese electronics and entertainment company’s continuing losses. Hirai, who took the helm in 2012, promised that “the money-losing structure” will be fixed this fiscal year once and for all, and apologized for not […]
Last week, Sony reported a $1.3 billion loss for the fiscal year ended March. It is forecasting a $490 million loss for the current fiscal year. Sony has repeatedly disappointed investors by not achieving its profit forecasts. “We must acknowledge that out steps to take action had come much too slowly,” Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai told reporters today. “We are going to fully complete our structural reforms.”
Sony Corp. Chief Executive Kazuo Hirai on Thursday defended the company’s ownership of an electronics-gear business and entertainment operations under one roof — a corporate mix that has come under assault from hedge-fund investor Daniel Loeb.
Kazuo Hirai told reporters that Sony is now more nimble and focused under his leadership which began nine months ago. He proudly points to Sony’s new waterproof, full-HD cellphone, set to go on sale around the world in the next few months. That product, as well as the 4K or “ultra-HD” TV, whose displays have four times the pixels of today’s TVs, received mostly positive feedback at the recent International CES gadget show in Las Vegas.
Frustrated investors at the company’s annual meeting in Tokyo grilled new President Kazuo Hirai and other board members, demanding to know how the company’s past glory was going to be revived. One shareholder asked why Howard Stringer, whom Hirai replaced, was staying on as chairman when Sony’s performance had been so dismal under his seven-year tenure.
When Hirai becomes Sony’s president-CEO on April 1, he takes charge of a company facing a crisis unlike anything it has experienced in its nearly 70-year history. It’s been years since Sony has produced a new mega-hit device. Its TV business is an albatross that has accumulated losses of $10 billion. The company is on course for a fourth straight annual net loss for the year ending March 31.
Sony veteran Kazuo Hirai will be the company’s next president, Japan’s Nikkei business daily reports. Current CEO Howard Stringer will remain the chairman and CEO of the company, the report says. The executive shuffle, it’s said, will be finalized sometime this month, with Hirai taking the post in April.
A massive new consumer group will be led by Kazuo Hirai, a rising executive who has overseen a recovery in Sony’s video game business. The move likely sets the stage for him to one day take over for current CEO Howard Stringer.