Struggling electronics giant Sony has announced that vice president Kazuo Hirai will take over the role of chief executive from Howard Stringer on 1 April in an effort to turn its fortunes around.
Sony has suffered several setbacks in recent years as its dominance in the music technology industry has been decimated by Apple with its iPod devices, while it has also failed to make any traction in the tablet market.
The firm was also severely affected by numerous security attacks on its infrastructure in 2011, the most notable of which saw millions of customer details compromised and its PlayStation Network forced offline for several weeks.
This led the firm to warn investors and analysts that it is likely to post losses totalling almost $1bn this week, giving Hirai a lot to tackle when he takes up the position.
But Hirai appeared confident he could lead the firm in the right direction.
"The path we must take is clear: to drive the growth of our core electronics businesses - primarily digital imaging, smart mobile and game; to turn around the television business; and to accelerate the innovation that enables us to create new business domains," he said.
"The foundations are now firmly in place to leverage Sony's diverse electronics product portfolio, in conjunction with our rich entertainment assets and growing array of networked services."
Stringer, who will now join the company's board, said the experience Hirai has gained from his many years at the firm meant he was the right choice to take the company forward.
"[Hirai] is a globally-focused executive for whom technology and the cloud are familiar territory, content is highly valued, and digital transformation is second nature," he said.
The move makes Sony yet another ailing technology giant to place its faith in a change of leadership as the cure for its ills, after Nokia appointed Stephen Elop last year and Research in Motion promoted chief operating officer Thorsten Heins last week.
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