updated 05:00 am EST, Mon December 26, 2011
Sony quits S-LCD joint-venture with Samsung
Sony has confirmed the previously rumored sell-off of its stake in the S-LCD joint venture with Samsung. Sony said that Samsung will buy out its shares in the partnership for $940 million. The move follows its recent decision to split its loss making TV division into three separate groups and will help pay for its recent acquisition of Ericsson's stake in their mobile phone joint venture.
Sony has been struggling to turn a profit in TVs for the past seven years. Despite being the world's third largest manufacturer of flat panel displays, it has struggled to adjust to the strength of the Yen and the competition posed by Samsung, LG and Taiwanese LCD panel and TV makers. Its decision to sell off off its stake in the S-LCD joint venture comes at a time when the company is said to be switching its emphasis from its TV making operations to its smartphone and tablet businesses.
The global TV market is said to have peaked this year, while users are now also looking to secondary devices to consume entertainment content as many are already happy with their current flat screen TVs. Sony has worked hard to integrate its Sony Online Entertainment Network services and has developed Android apps for its users to access the services on the company's Android smartphones and tablets. Its Tablet S and Tablet P are also PlayStation Certified and allow users to play console titles from the original Sony PlayStation. [via Reuters]