Sony Names Hirai as CEO and President in Waiting
Sony has named Kaz Hirai as the successor to Howard Stringer’s roles as both president and CEO, effective April 1, 2012. Stringer, who has lead the company in the joint role for seven years, will take up the position of chairman of the board, whilst current chairman Yotaro Kobayashi will retire.
Stringer has presided over a difficult period at the company, during which it has lost ground across many markets. Apple’s iPod has devastated Sony’s once seemingly insurmountable dominance of portable music players, whilst Samsung’s televisions have also stolen a large portion of the corporation’s consumer electronics business.
Meanwhile, the PlayStation business, which Hirai currently oversees, has come under continual pressure from a revitalised Nintendo and a persistent Microsoft.
Stringer was ebullient about the succession, praising Hirai’s performance in his previous role.