Although ranked close to the top 100 on the 2015 Fortune Global 500 list, and widely recognized as one of the world’s leading electronic products manufacturers, as well as an entertainment and gaming juggernaut, Sony’s had its trouble reaping profits from certain business segments and sub-segments of late.
The mobile communications division, including long-struggling Xperia smartphones, and the ambiguously named devices department, consisting of semiconductors and components, in particular performed poorly last year.
While Android handhelds are offered one potential final chance, Sony’s patience with at least a piece of the component business seems to have run out. Enter Murata, a name that may not ring many bells for tech consumers, but that’s been around for over 70 years, currently focusing on production of ceramic passive electronic components such as capacitors.
The Japan-based “global leader in the area of electronic components” is apparently looking to branch out, and Sony’s wish to hawk its flagging battery venture comes at an opportune moment.
A non-binding memorandum of understanding is already signed, with a negotiation of detailed terms and conditions following next, and a transfer completion targeted for no later than the end of Q1 2017. If the transaction works out, Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. will swallow Sony Energy Devices Corporation, nabbing battery-related manufacturing operations in China and Singapore in the process, plus assets and personnel “assigned to the battery business at the Sony Group’s sales and R&D sites in Japan and worldwide.”