United front

As promised, former PlayStation president and new Sony CEO Kaz Hirai has revealed his rescue strategy designed to resurrect the ailing Japanese giant. The likable executive’s speech hinged on the idea of change and unification – something Sony has been striving towards with little success for years.

In his presentation, Hirai stressed the importance of gaming as one of Sony’s key pillars going forward. A statement released by the company this morning summarised:

Sony is positioning digital imaging, game and mobile as the three main focus areas of its electronics business and plans to concentrate investment and technology development resources in these areas.

The manufacturer continued that PS3, Vita and peripheral sales (such as Move) are generating “steady profit” – something it hopes to expand going forward.

The company declared:

In the game business, Sony continues to deliver exhilarating entertainment experiences through PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, and its unique combination of hardware, software, PlayStation Network and range of accessories and peripherals.

These will form the foundations on which Sony will target further sales and profit expansion in the game business.

Sony aims to increase sales by “enriching its downloadable titles and subscription services available through the PlayStation Network”. While that statement sounds a lot like the company is going to start charging for PSN, the document actually expicitly mentions PlayStation Plus, which we’re sure is going to become a bigger endeavour for Sony come PS4.

The company also hopes to extend its content delivery platform by expanding the line-up of PlayStation Suite compatible devices.

In all, Sony expects to earn ¥1trillion from its game business by 2014. That leads us to believe that it will aim for profitability with PS4, which is certain to factor into this target.

In addition to leveraging its core businesses, Hirai also announced plans to turn the company’s flagging television business around. To do this, he stated intent to reach new markets and accelerate innovation.

Sadly, Hirai did confirm that, as previously rumoured, 10,000 jobs would be cut between now and March 2013. The move is part of a greater initiative to realign the company’s “headquarters, subsidiaries and sales company organisations in order to further enhance operational efficiencies”.

To conclude, Hirai revealed a new corporate philosophy for the company called “One Sony”. It is designed to represent a new era of streamlined management, products and services.

It definitely sounds like Hirai has a great vision – but now he obviously faces the challenge of putting it into action. We probably won’t start to see results for at least another 18 months, but it’s great to see the PlayStation brand placed at the summit of the company’s focus going forward.

Fingers crossed Kaz can turn things around.

[source sony.net]