New Sony CEO says turnaround plan will work

Sony’s recently appointed CEO Kazuo Hirai told shareholders at Sony’s AGM in Tokyo that the electronics giant’s turnaround plan would work, helped by new products such as Sony’s new Xperia smartphone, gaming and digital imaging, plus a newly established medical division.

Hirai explained that group sales would expand by about one third to more than $107 billion, and would achieve an operating margin of more than 5 per cent.
However, while he was happy to supply a target that saw Sony’s games division tripling online sales by March 2015, there were few details as to how Sony established TV and laptop and PlayStation segments would be enhanced.

Some 9300 shareholders attended the meeting which also saw Sony’s chairman Sir Howard Stringer apologise and say he deeply regretted the recent record losses, citing last year’s earthquake and tsunami as well as Thailand floods as being responsible for the $5.75 billion losses.

Hirai backed Stringer, and the meeting approved Stringer’s continued employment as well as the other 13 Board members. Sony’s market value at close of business on Tuesday evening was $13.9 billion, less than one-tenth that of rival Samsung ($158 billion).

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