Sony Pictures Fiscal Year Income Revised Down $145M22 Jan, 2009 By: Erik Gruenwedel
Recessionary realities continue to wreak havoc as Sony Corp. Jan. 22 said fiscal year 2008 (ending March 31) operating income for Sony Pictures would decline $145 million from a previous forecast last October.
Sony Pictures includes Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
The revision comes as Sony Corp. said it would likely generate a loss of $1.6 billion — its first annual net loss in 14 years. The media conglomerate, which last month said it would eliminate 8,000 positions this year, reported a $4.1 billion profit during the previous period.
Sony wasn’t alone in its pessimism as Microsoft said it would eliminate 5,000 positions — the first significant layoffs in its history — and The Walt Disney Co. said it would cut 600 positions from its theme park and resort division. Warner Bros. said it would eliminate 800 positions in the coming weeks.
At a Tokyo press conference, Sony cited the economic downturn, restructuring charges and appreciation of the yen (to the dollar) for the downward revision in filmed entertainment.
Separately, Sony maintained previous projections to sell 2.2 million standalone Blu-ray players and 10 million PlayStation 3 game consoles in fiscal year 2008.
Operating income for Sony’s games division, however, is expected to decline more than $336 million due in part to $168 million in lower-than-expected sales of PS3, PSP and PS2 video games.
Sony said it would initiate freezes on executive bonuses, introduce early retirement programs, close select TV design and manufacturing facilities and reduce its global workforce 30% by 2010.
“We have a long way to go,” said Sony Corp. CEO Howard Stringer.