Sony’s mobile numbers continue to drop ahead of major management restructuring
Promoted to President and CEO of a money-bleeding Sony Corporation back in 2012, Kazuo Hirai is stepping down on a high note today to make room for a “new management structure” led by Kenichiro Yoshida.
Effective April 1, current Chief Financial Officer Kenichiro Yoshida will assume Chief Executive Officer duties, with Hiroki Totoki moving up to the CFO role, and Kazuo Hirai staying on as a much less involved Director and Chairman of the Japanese multinational conglomerate.
Totoki will, in turn, be replaced with Shigeki Ishizuka as “Officer in charge” of the Mobile Communications Business, although Ishizuka is set to also retain his position as Officer in charge of the Imaging Products & Solutions Business.
Speaking of Sony’s increasingly irrelevant mobile division, we probably shouldn’t be shocked to see its latest quarterly sales and profit scores take a hit compared to 2016’s fiscal Q3. Only 4 million Xperias were sold worldwide between October and December 2017, down from an already disappointing 5.1 mil unit count a year earlier.
That generated a modest 217.5 billion yen revenue, equating to roughly $2 billion, and representing a significant 12.5 percent decrease from the Q3 2016 result. Obviously, operating income also declined year-on-year, from 21.2 to 15.8 billion yen, or a measly $145 million.
Worse still, Sony expects to conclude the fiscal year with a total of 14 million smartphone unit sales, down from 14.6 mil between April 2016 and March 2017, as well as an excessively optimistic target of 15.5 million units set this past October.
While waiting for the “next paradigm shift”, the Japanese tech and entertainment giant can always rely on its other departments to make the big bucks, yielding a staggering overall quarterly profit of 350.8 billion yen. That’s up from JPY 92.4B in the October – December 2016 period, setting a new all-time Q3 record. Full-year operating income is now predicted to reach 720 billion yen, which would be Sony’s highest ever profit score. So, yeah, this looks like perfect timing for Hirai’s very smart exit.