Sony sees first loss in 14 years

Business Materials 14 May 2009 12:57 (UTC +04:00)

Electronics giant Sony has reported its first annual loss in 14 years, after being hit by a big drop in sales, BBC reported.

Sony reported a loss of 98.9bn yen ($1.04bn; £685m) for the year to the end of March, compared with a profit of 369.4bn yen the previous year.

The company blamed the global downturn and the strong yen for the loss. Worldwide sales were down 12.9%.

It had previously announced it would be cutting 8,000 of its 185,000 workforce and closing 10% of its factories.

Sony's president Ryoji Chubachi stepped down in April as part of a managerial shake-up at the group.

However, the loss was not as bad as Sony had expected. It had forecast a loss of 150bn yen back in January.

Sony's shares closed down 6.8% at 2,400 yen ahead of the results.

Several Japanese companies have said they have been hurt by the strong yen, which make exports more expensive.

On Tuesday, Hitachi announced an annual loss of 787.3bn yen - a record for a Japanese manufacturer.