Tokyo (Japan) - Is there anything you’ve wanted to know about the Sony Corporation over the past 61 years? How about that in 1946, they were originally named Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo K.K. (Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corporation). They did not change their name to "Sony Corporation" for 12 years, until 1958. Sony’s ten-year Fact Book history provide much detail about the company.
Are you ready to feel your age by remembering that in 1979 Sony introduced the Walkman (for those who are too young to remember such things, it was a type of tape cassette forerunner to the iPod, but with over-the-head ear phones and AA batteries lasting about 8-12 hours per 4 batteries, playing up to 90 minutes of music per cassette in tape quality, something like 32-64 kbps MP3). It was in 1982, the same year Intel introduced the 80286, that Sony introduced their first CD player, the same year they introduced a broadcast-quality portable, hand-held Betamax video camera (for professional use).
If we look at Sony’s financial data, we can see a definite negative trend in the 2003/2004 timeframe. This seems to have recovered by 2006, and is looking to be stronger this year. In 1997, Sony employed 163,000 people. That number increased to a maximum of 189,700 in 1999, before dropping down to 151,400 in 2004. In 2006 they were back up to 163,000.
Worldwide sales are pretty much evenly split, with Japan accounting for 25.6%, Europe for 24.6% and USA for 26.9%. All other areas account for 22.9%. Their revenue comes from Electronics 65.4%, Games division 11.7%, Pictures division 11.7%, Financial Services 7.5%, and all other 3.7%. Sony Music was integrated into the "all other" category in 2004, and accounts for a very small portion of Sony’s business.
Read more ... Sony’s multi-quarter Fact Book history. A hard-copy can also be requested.