Sony reported to be cutting 10,000 jobs worldwide
9 April 2012
Japan's Sony is to cut 10,000 global jobs, about 6% of its workforce according to Nikkei newspaper, as new chief executive Kazuo Hirai looks to steer the company back to profit after four years in the red.
The job cuts would be the latest downsizing in Japan where companies from NEC to Panasonic are cutting costs in the face of a strong yen and competition from rivals such as Apple and Samsung Electronics.
TV makers in particular have been hit hard by the business climate as well as price falls, with Sony, Panasonic and Sharp expecting to have lost a combined $17bn in the fiscal year just ended.
Investors will closely monitor a briefing on Thursday by Hirai, who formally took over this month as chief executive from Howard Stringer, for further clues on how Sony plans to revamp its business.
The Nikkei said half of the latest round of job cuts would come from consolidating the firm's chemicals and small and midsize LCD operations.
Sony said last month it was selling a chemical products division, accounting for some 3,000 people, while on 1 April it merged its Sony Mobile display unit, which had about 2,000 workers, with the small LCD panel businesses of Toshiba and Hitachi into a new firm called Japan Display.
As of the end of March 2011, Sony had 168,200 employees, according to the company's website.
Sony may also ask its seven executive directors who served through to the end of March, including Stringer, who is now chairman, to return their bonuses, the Nikkei said.
Sony, which announced 16,000 job cuts in December 2008 after the global financial crisis battered demand for its products, declined to comment on the report. The company has forecast a ¥220bn (£1.7bn) net loss for the year just ended, hurt in large part by its ailing TV business.
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