Sony is to cut up to 10,000 jobs worldwide as part of a major reorganisation at the Japanese electronic giant.
The announcement was made at a news conference in Tokyo on Thursday by Kazuo Hirai, the company’s new chief executive.
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Up to six per cent of its global workforce will lose their jobs as Sony aims to reduce costs and balance huge losses.
Hirai earlier this week announced an annual loss forecast estimated at a record $6.4bn.
He is under pressure to fix an ailing TV unit and turn around a brand that has been trampled on by US-based Apple and South Korea-based Samsung in the consumer gadgets market.
“We have heard a multitude of investor voices calling for change,” Hirai told the packed news conference at Sony’s headquarters.
The company expects to make the job cuts over the next 12 months.
That reduction includes staff working in businesses that are being sold, such as the company’s joint venture in making flat screen displays.
Sony said it would focus its business on the areas of digital imaging, games consoles and mobile devices.
In a statement ahead of the briefing, Sony said it would post a restructuring charge of about $926m in the year to March 2013, and aim to cut its fixed costs in the TV business by 60 per cent in the 2013/14 business year from this year’s levels, and trim 30 per cent off the business’ operating costs.
Sony, along with other leading Japanese TV makers Sharp and Panasonic have been battered by weak demand, fierce competition and a stronger yen that makes exports less competitive.
The three companies expect a combined loss for the year just ended of $21bn – more than Sony’s entire market value,
which has slumped by close to a fifth in the past month.