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Sony hit with record losses, cuts 10,000 jobs, games big focus of revitalization plans

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“Sony will change,” promises new president and CEO Kazuo Hirai: “I've fully dedicated myself to changing Sony.” Hirai, who took over Howard Stringer's position at the top on April 1 of this year, responded to this week's dire financial projections – a doubled loss for 2012, signaling its worst year yet – with a plan for renewal. The plan includes boosting the company's core areas, among them gaming, Hirai's previous responsibility and the area in which the CEO made his name. Sony will also be cutting 6% of its global workforce, it announced.

Above: Hirai, left, and predecessor Stringer

The revised figures put the company's losses at $US6.4 billion, its fourth straight year of losses. Hirai says that as CEO, he takes these figures “very seriously. But at the same time, it strengthened my resolve to transform Sony.” He says those beneath him share this resolve: “Employees too want to restore Sony to its former glory and go beyond."

To this end, Sony's released a brief (via Joystiq) for what it calls its “One Sony” strategy, whose first article of business is a renewed focus on the company's core areas. These include its Game division, which had previously prospered during the PS2 era with Hirai at its head. The company has announced a renewed focus on the PlayStation Network, aiming to “increase sales by enriching its catalog of downloadable game titles and subscription services.” It also aims to provide more compatibility and content for the PlayStation Suite, coming to Android devices and others as announced last year.

However, the price paid for this renewed focus comes in the company's employment figures. Sony says it will be cutting some 10,000 jobs across the entire Sony group in 2012, saying it expects to spend almost $US1 billion on restructuring costs. The company hopes to see Hirai follow the One Sony plan to a profitable position by this time next year, it says. Concrete results for the year will be released next month.

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10 comments

  • aberkromby - April 13, 2012 1:54 p.m.

    They need to provide customer service more than anything. If they don't start treating their customers better, I won't be buying the next console, which means I won't be buying any more of Sony's crap. I'm sure I'm not alone in this.
  • Cloud1Fair3 - April 13, 2012 9:16 a.m.

    Wow, I'm suprised Sony is doing so poorly, despite its shitty business practices. I'm not a fan of the online pass thing, the class-action waiver, or their lack of security, but their games are my favorite of the new-gen even though I suppose I haven't really played many 360 exclusives (Gears of War and Left 4 Dead are cool). PS3 could reach out to more third party developers to help make more PSN exclusives, which would always be cool and good idea. They could drop the whole online pass thing, because that just makes me not want to buy their games period. They could expand their first party developers to help pump out some more awesome games from Sucker Punch, Naughty Dawg, Santa Monica (although I'm not sure that's a developing company, it's publishing isn't it?), Insomniac, all good first party studios with a lot of talent and potential. Granted, they can only make games so fast, pumping money into those studios to expand their work force and resources would not be a bad investment IMO. More Sucker Punch games annually wouldn't hurt my feelings. I am looking forward to the Last of Us. Hell, I would love to hear about Uncharted 4, even if Uncharted 3 just did come out.
  • Cloud1Fair3 - April 13, 2012 9:20 a.m.

    Oh, and fucking make some good move exclusives. My PS move was a waste of $150+. If you want my patronage, don't sell a gimicky toy. I want a hardcore gaming device, not just an add on that sucks (I hate the shoddy shooter controls with the sharpshooter). Or, if you must make the move only a side add on, find a way to incorporate it better into gameplay. I'm guessing that's difficult because you'd have to develop a game that nearly requires the move to make it innovative and immersively move compatible which would mean the basic controller controls might be lacking... but damn, just make my money worth it or I am never buying Sony accessories again.
  • c-c-c-combo breaker - April 13, 2012 6:55 a.m.

    Howard Stringer didn't know what he was doing. Hirai should be good, because he's japanese.
  • TheHowetzer - April 13, 2012 7:35 a.m.

    LOL Wheres Tosh when you need him? I need him to run a "is it racist?" Segment on the above comment man.
  • c-c-c-combo breaker - April 13, 2012 9:58 a.m.

    Nordic master race here, I don't think that's the point of what I'm trying to say. Culture =/= Biological attributes
  • MetroidPrimeRib - April 12, 2012 9:36 p.m.

    It would be terrible for the industry in whole for Sony to drop out, but you got to remember Sony isn't just a game company. They should drop the laptop brand.
  • phoenix_wings - April 12, 2012 7:56 p.m.

    Sony lost a lot of money last year due to the PSN outage. Overlooking that would be a huge mistake. That probably accounted for a lot of loss over previous years.
  • TheHowetzer - April 13, 2012 7:37 a.m.

    Yes. I remember warning about stuff like this that may ultimately hurt us as gamers because of the idiot hackers out there that of course are only looking out for the consumer when the network had first gone down.
  • bigwill1221 - April 12, 2012 6:16 p.m.

    Should cut the salary of the higher ups imo.

Showing 1-10 of 10 comments

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