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Sony Mobile is refusing to throw in the towel

Sony has been absolutely killing it with PlayStation 4 sales ever since the console launched, but the company’s other products haven’t been doing nearly as well, especially those coming from its mobile division. With massive losses and terrible sales, you would think that Sony Mobile would throw in the towel, but the division’s CEO and president, Hiroki Totoki, has assured us that Sony is never going to leave the mobile business, no matter how bad things get. 

The phrase ‘thrown in at the deep end’ might have been invented for Hiroki Totoki. The CEO and president of Sony Mobile (formerly Sony Ericsson) was appointed to the top job in November 2014 against a backdrop of poor sales, rapidly increasing competition from budget brands and the payment of a $1.5bn impairment charge. The much written about charge considerably dragged down Sony’s overall financial performance for 2014, leaving the corporation’s top management with some difficult decisions over the future. Combined with low-cost smartphones from Chinese manufacturers seriously denting the company’s market share, despite Sony Mobile’s highly regarded product line, a new strategy was called for. Hand-picked by Sony boss Kazuo Hirai to turn around the ailing mobile unit, swift and noticeable changes were expected of Totoki. Suffice to say he’s had his work cut out from day one. “I’ve been quite busy,” he says, almost deadpan, as he recounts the first few months of his reign. “I was told that I would become CEO of Sony Mobile in, I think, October, and I was told that this company needs to be turned around as quickly as possible.

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