He announced his departure on Friday in New York during a speech at the Japan Society, and Sony, in Tokyo, confirmed the news on Sunday. He will step down at an annual general shareholders meeting.
Mr. Stringer, a Welsh-born American and 15-year employee at Sony, became president and chief executive in 2005, when the once glorious maker of the Walkman music player was starting to get overwhelmed by the flashier Apple and the nimbler Samsung Electronics.
The company, which makes the PlayStation 3 game console as well as “Spider-Man” movies, is still struggling. It has lost money for the last four years and recorded the biggest loss in its 67-year history for the fiscal year ending in March 2012.
Mr. Stringer said he was ready to retire after turning over the helm last year to Kazuo Hirai. Mr. Stringer groomed Mr. Hirai, longtime head of Sony’s video-game unit, who led its relative success as a brand in the American market, to be his successor as chief and president.
“I was pleased to hand the reins to Kazuo Hirai last year because I saw in him the right mix of skills to lead Sony, and I knew it was the right time to bring about generational change,” Mr. Stringer said in the speech. “Over the course of the past year, he has come into his own and is leading Sony with vision and authority.”
Mr. Stringer said he would remain busy with charity work in education and medicine, and would continue as chairman of the American Film Institute.
Before joining Sony in 1997, Mr. Stringer had a 30-year career as a journalist, producer and executive at CBS. His main role was considered to be developing strategic links between the entertainment and electronics business, a plan Sony has pursued for years but is still not fully realized.
Sony has recently introduced smartphones and other products to good reviews. But it is still losing money in its core television-manufacturing unit.
Chairman of Sony Announces Retirement – New York Times
Technology – Google News