Sony is set to start shipping Bravia TV’s to third world countries and emerging markets in an effort to lift sales. The move is aimed at capitalising on the past strengths of the brand. However Sony executives have said that they will not discount the brand but instead add value to models.
Senior executives at both LG and Samsung have said that recent market share figures show that Sony is now adopting a strategy of surrendering market share to other brands as opposed to selling Bravia TV’s at a loss.
In markets like Australia, the USA and Europe, Sony is under threat from brands like Panasonic, LG and Samsung. Globally the company has admitted that the it has never made a profit from their Bravia LCD TV range.
In the first quarter, the global LCD TV market share of Sony plunged to 13.1 percent. Samsung Electronics leads the industry with a 21.5-percent share, followed by LG Electronics with 13.3 percent, market research firm DisplaySearch said.
“It seems interesting that Sony has officially surrendered in the market share war with South Korean rivals. Personally, the success of Sony’s measures depends on the partnership with Samsung,” a high-ranking executive of Samsung Electronics told The Korea Times this week.
Recently Sony has been sacking staff and closing factories in an effort to make money. Sony Vice President Hiroshi Yoshioka recently said the company aims to turn to profit on its TV business by cutting costs and introducing products with advanced features.
“Sony will be unable to compete with foreign manufacturers in cutting prices due to the yen’s appreciation,” he said.
Sony is forecast to suffer losses for six straight years Samsung executives have said.
Ironically, Sony is dependent on Samsung as they both share an investment in a TV manufacturing business. Sony owns 49% of Samsung-Sony LCD and Samsung 51%.
Recently Sony Chairman Howard Stringer paid a rare trip to the Samsung-Sony LCD joint venture in South Korea’s provincial city of Tangjeong to participate in the opening of a new LCD manufacturing line that cost $1.5 billion to build.
In recent months, Sony executives have met with both Sharp and LG to discuss the manufacture of Sony Bravia LCD TV’s a move that upset Samsung – the majority owners in the Samsung-Sony LCD joint venture.