Sony CEO Kaz Hirai: "Holy Sh*t, now what?"
Sony's incoming CEO Kaz Hirai is in for a rough ride, and knows it too.
Speaking ahead of the company's quarterly financial report yesterday, Hirai admitted turning the Sony business around was going to be his "toughest challenge" yet.
Yesterday Sony reported a a 17.4% year-on-year decrease in total revenue and expects to report a loss of $2.9 billion for the full year - the fourth consecutive year in red. Hirai, who is most notable for his hard-nosed cuts and squeezing profits out of Sony's PlayStation game division.
"I thought turning around the PlayStation business was going to be the toughest challenge of my career, but I guess not," he said in an exclusive interview with The Wall Street Journal, talking about difficulties in fixing the electronics business. "It's one issue after another. I feel like 'Holy sh*t, now what?'"
Well, for one, Mr. Hirai plans on teaching the company's current 168,000 employees to stop relying on past successes and start selling the "user experience."
"We can't just continue to be a great purveyor of hardware products, even though some people expect us to do that," he said.
He added: "We really need to buckle down and be realistic. I don't think everybody is on board, but I think people are coming around to the idea that if we don't turn this around, we could be sitting in some serious trouble."
The upcoming president of Sony has plans to "cut costs" and "shake up" the corporate structure that he blames for stifling product innovations. Former PlayStation boss Kaz Hirai officially takes over for Howard Stringer on April 1st.