Sony has announced that it is selling off its money-losing PC division in order to focusing on mobile devices, high-end TVs and its gaming business.
The Vaio brand and all the notebooks and computers produced under it will be sold to investment fund Japan Industrial Partners for an undisclosed fee. Sony will “cease planning, design and development of PC products” with manufacturing sand sales also discontinued after the launch of the spring 2014 line-up.
As part of the announcement Sony also announced that it would cut 5,000 jobs and predicted a loss of 110 billion yen (£665 million) for the current financial year, after previously forecasting a profit of 30 billion yen.
The company’s TV division will also be split off into a separate unit by July 2014, with Sony restructuring to concentrate on the high-end of the market, specifically 4K models. Sony has so far secure more than 75 per cent of the market for these in Japan.
CEO Kazuo Hirai has said he wants to reorienate the company to focus on promising areas such as smartphones and game consoles. Sony has reported a “significant increase in sales of smartphones” as well as a healthy jump in the operating income of its games division, thanks to the introduction of the PS4 game console.
Sony’s Vaio brand (an acronym of Video Audio Integrated Operation that was later changed to Visual Audio Intelligent Organizer) was introduced in 1996 and has since covered a diverse range of devices, from traditional desktop PCs to ultra-portable subtnotebook computers.