More Restructuring Planned at Sony


TOKYO: Posting a loss of 128.4 billion yen ($1.3 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2014, and forecasting a 50 billion yen ($491 million) loss for fiscal 2015, Sony Corporation is set to unveil "significant measures to deal with its problematic businesses" at its corporate strategy meeting on May 22.

The conglomerate reported revenues that were 14 percent higher, to 7.8 billion yen ($76.6 million), boosted by the PS4 and improved smartphone sales, as well as favorable impact of foreign exchange rates. It attributed its fiscal 2014 loss to a weaker PC unit and restructuring costs related to Sony exiting that business. There were also impairment charges related to its battery- and disc-manufacturing businesses.

Gains were reported in its mobile products, gaming, music and home entertainment and sound segments. Sony Pictures reported revenues that were 6 percent lower on a constant currency basis at $8.1 billion, largely due to the prior year including Skyfall, The Amazing Spider-Man and Men in Black 3. Revenue from television production, however, "increased significantly," the company said, driven by game shows like Wheel of Fortune and home-entertainment and SVOD fees from Breaking Bad. Media networks revenues were also up, thanks to an increase in advertising and digital game revenues. Operating income rose to $501 million. For fiscal 2015, Sony is forecasting improved revenues at its studio business, driven by its media networks, as well as a 26 percent boost in operating income.

On the road ahead, the company stated: "Sony is accelerating initiatives to revitalize its electronics businesses by accelerating reforms in the three core electronics businesses (Mobile, Game and Imaging) and taking significant measures to deal with its problematic businesses while further growing the entertainment and financial services businesses that have been contributing stable profits, in order to enhance the entire Sony Group’s corporate value."