Sony revealed Thursday that it will buy the whole of Ericsson’s share with their mobile phone joint venture Sony Ericsson. This in turn will make the latter a subsidiary of the Sony by January next year.
The Japanese electronics brand Sony, disclosed that it will be spending €1.05 billion (US$1.47 billion) to buy Ericsson’s business and patents share.
Since 2001, Sony has been releasing smartphones through the joint venture with Swedish company Ericsson but with the new agreement, it can already integrate the phones with the rest of its product line-up. This becomes similar to what competitor groups like Samsung and Apple are currently practicing.
Sony said that this is a strategic move towards adapting the advancements of the mobile market. The company pointed out the evolution of mobile phones in the past decade and that their bold move is taking into account the impact of this evolution.
The venture of the two companies has helped their mobile products through inculcating Sony’s famous brands like the Cybershot series into phone models. Recently, the joint group unveiled its Xperia phone brand. Sony has also extended its services like game download and network streaming to cater to Android devices.
By making Sony Ericsson a subsidiary, Sony can already include phones in its goal to interconnect laptops, televisions, smartphones and tablets also dubbed as the “four-screen strategy.”
Howard Stringer, Sony’s CEO mentioned in a press conference that this step is the last piece of the puzzle. Hans Vestberg, Ericsson’s CEO said that this is a natural step for the company to take. The latter can now place its concentration to running and developing mobile networks. This deal was already expected after recent rumors emerged.
Stringer is optimistic with the possibilities that acquiring Sony Ericsson will bring. He mentions about the statistics of smartphones outnumbering people in the United States and how much consumers have like smartphones. He is looking forward to catching up with the smartphone market leaders like Apple, Samsung and HTC.
Stringer informed that a new task force will look into the best ways of integrating Sony Ericsson with Sony’s other products. He added that the company will be creating a new brand of smartphones but in the mean time Sony Ericsson still lives.