Sony has officially named Kazuo Hirai as President and CEO, replacing Howard Stringer in both roles. The move to the role of company president was reported last month, but Sony has now confirmed that Hirai will be taking on CEO responsibilities as well, effective from April. Stringer will become chairman of the board in June, remaining executive chairman until then.
Hirai, 51, is currently the president of Sony Computer Entertainment. He is largely credited with turning around Sony's video game business in recent years, and also took over consumer electronics responsibilities in April. His career began at Sony Music in 1984, before joining Sony Computer Entertainment America around the time of the original PlayStation's launch in 1995. Stringer, 69, was the company's first foreign president, but recently presided over some tough times at the company. With Sony's financial briefing due tomorrow, the company may wish to show that it's turning over a new leaf. A native of Tokyo, Hirai is a fluent speaker of English, and is likely viewed as the ideal candidate to unite Sony's famously fragmented structure.