Sony has revealed it is going to sell off its Vaio laptop division in an attempt to deal with its financial problems.
The ailing tech giant announced the move alongside plans to cut the size of its workforce by 5,000 in total – 1,500 within Japan and 3,500 overseas. It scrapped the £180 million full-year profit forecast from October and replaced it with a loss forecast of over £600 million.
Sony’s Vaio laptop division has been operating for 18 years and has seen the global PC industry change dramatically since this time, but an analysis of current “drastic changes” has prompted Sony to concentrate its mobile product offerings on tablets and smartphones, with PCs and tablets transferred to a new company. It’s also going to shut down digital reading services in North America and transfer existing customers to Kobo.
The last few years have not been kind to Sony – in April 2012, the company slashed another 10,000 jobs, while last month, Moody’s gave it a ‘junk’ credit rating.
Sony’s moves to sell of the laptop division came as tablet computers established market dominance in the global market, with smartphones and notebooks also putting pressure on the sector.
To get back to strength, Sony is to ramp up its investment in its TV subsidiary, to reinforce its leading position in the 4K television market and to focus on tailor-made televisions for customers in emerging markets.
However, Sony’s television business and smartphone business are also loss-making, although its Xperia phones are doing relatively well. The Playstation 4 games console also sold more units internationally than its much-hyped Xbox One competitor, with both consoles leaving old rival Nintendo in the dust.
Sony confirmed it will continue to offer aftercare services to its former PC customers.