Sony's newly annointed CEO and President Kazuo Hirai has a monumental task in front of him. He inherited a company that's coping with weak TV sales, disruptions in the electronics market due to the severe flooding in Thailand, and a strong yen, all of which came together to wreak havoc on Sony's bottom line. The struggling electronics company posted a net loss of 159 billion yen, or about $2.1 billion, for the October 1, 2011 to December 31, 2011 quarter.
Hirai represents a generational change in leadership for Sony, and perhaps that's exactly what's needed. Sony isn't the same big-man-on-campus that it was decades ago and now faces intense competition in each of its market specialties, from gaming consoles to TVs and music. According to a report in The Washington Post, this is the fourth year in a row Sony has posted a loss. Hirai, at age 51, will become Sony's youngest CEO when he assumes the role in April and is prepared to make some tough decisions.
"Sony must steer a new course," Hirai said at a new conference. "We will need to make painful decisions and execute them, but I believe these are unavoidable for Sony's future."