Sony Electronics Unit to Cut One-Third of Its Employees

Sony Electronics said it will eliminate one-third of its staff this year, or 1,000 employees, as part of the job cuts its parent company Sony Corp. announced this month.

The San Diego-based unit, which makes high-definition televisions, will also close 20 U.S. stores, it said yesterday in a statement. Sony Corp., based in Tokyo, announced plans earlier this month to cut 5,000 jobs around the world. Sony shares fell.

Sony forecast a $1.1 billion loss this year as demand slows for TVs and personal computers, while competitors such as Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. dominate the still-growing market for smartphones. The company plans to sell its PC business to buyout firm Japan Industrial Partners Inc. and is splitting the TV manufacturing unit into a separate operating entity.

“While these moves were extremely tough, they were absolutely necessary to position us in the best possible place for future growth,” said Mike Fasulo, president and chief operating officer of Sony Electronics, in the statement today. “I am entirely confident in our ability to turn the business around.”

Sony fell 0.4 percent to close at 1,757 yen in Tokyo trading, extending a 3.8 percent decline this year. The Topix index lost 0.7 percent.

(Updates with closing share price in fifth paragraph.)
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