Japanese consumer electronics giant Sony Corp. is looking to slash more jobs after its mainstream electronics equipment division continues to fail in producing profits. The company has not set a target number of jobs to be cut for this latest downsizing action, but according to Sony, the movement will affect five plants operated by Sony EMCS Corp. Sony EMCS produces digital cameras, TV sets and computers at plants in Aichi Prefecture, Nagano Prefecture, Shizuoka Prefecture, and Chiba Prefecture, employing around 5,000 people.
“Because there is insufficient demand in the electronic equipment sector to support the current work force, there is a need to reduce the sector to the appropriate level,” a Sony executive said. Initially, Sony will ask and look for employees willing to take early retirement from the period of Jan. 6 until the end of March, targeting employees 40 and older with at least 10 years of work experience with the company. Employees who avail of the early retirement clause will additional benefits, and Sony will even introduce them to another company in a bid to start them on new jobs.
Starting in the quarter of July to September in 2011, Sony’s electronic equipment sector started recording losses. This is very significant, as the division accounts for about 60 percent of the group’s total sales. In a bid to push for profit, Sony slashed about 10,000 jobs both in Japan and abroad in 2012, but the move only resulted in a temporary lift. Sony President and CEO Kazuo Hirai had pledged to turn the sector into a profitable one in the current fiscal year. The division recorded a profit in the April to June quarter this year, but all in all, it still recorded losses on the whole due in to sluggish sales.