15 May 2009

Big loss for Sony

4:28 pm on 15 May 2009

Sony has announced an annual loss of $US1 billion - its first net loss in 14 years after a big drop in sales.

The giant electronics company, which makes PlayStation games consoles and Vaio laptops, forecasts it will remain in the red until March 2010.

Sony reported a loss of 98.9 billion yen ($US1.04 billion) for the year to the end of March, compared with a profit of 369.4 billion yen the previous year. It forecast a net loss for the current financial year of 120 billion yen.

The company blamed the global downturn and the strong yen for the loss. Worldwide sales were down 12.9%.

It previously announced it would be cutting 8000 of its 185,000 workforce and closing 10% of its factories.

However, the loss was not as bad as Sony had expected. In January, it forecast a loss of 150 billion yen.

Several Japanese companies have been hurt by the strong yen, which make exports more expensive.

On Tuesday, Hitachi announced an annual loss of 787.3 billion yen - a record for a Japanese manufacturer.