The managing director of Sony Australia Carl Rose has tried to justify the move by Sony to third party Companies to manufacture their Bravia LCD Range at the Sydney launch today of new Full HD Bravia TV range.
During the past six months Sony has been forced to sack tens of thousands of employees and close factories after admitting that they had never made a profit with their Bravia LCD TV range. Currently Sony is using Taiwanese and Chinese manufacturers including AU Optronics and Chi Mei Optoelectronics to build their TV’s. They are also using long time partner Samsung and, later this year, Sharp to manufacture their premium Bravia LCD display panels.
The move to third party manufacturers (who also make their own HD LCD TV’s under a different brand name – an example being AU Optics who also owns BenQ) has raised questions. How much of a Sony TV is actually made by Sony and are Sony Bravia TV’s now worth a massive premium as was recently revealed in the recent JB Hi Fi catalogue?
Speaking at the launch of a new range of high priced Bravia LCD TV’s Mr. Rose, who has refused to comment on the mass sackings at Sony and the laying off of 32 people in Australia at a time when his main competitors LG, Samsung and Panasonic are hiring staff to handle an expansion of their Australian operations, was adamant that he still stands by the quality of Sony TV’s.
“I stand here today truly proud to work for Sony, a company that has always been, and will continue to be at the forefront of TV development and innovation”. He said
He added “I’d like to take this opportunity to mention that while many LCD manufacturers share costs to produce the mother-glass, let me absolutely assure you that our Bravia LCD TVs are made using Sony’s own product planning, own design, own specifications and own technologies. History and evidence tell us that consumers are willing to pay for this level of product quality and brand premium,” he said.
What Rose has refused to discuss is how Sony can continue to charge a premium for their TV’s which are made by third party vendors or why Sony adds margins of over 150% to Sony products sold in Australia when the same product is selling for considerable less in markets like the USA.