Sony Acquires Full Ownership of Sony Ericsson Business
Sony Corporation (Sony) and Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson (Ericsson) announced that Sony will acquire Ericsson’s 50 percent stake in Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB (Sony Ericsson), making the mobile handset business a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony.
The transaction gives Sony an opportunity to rapidly integrate smartphones into its network-connected consumer electronics devices – including tablets, televisions and personal computers. The transaction also provides Sony with a broad intellectual property (IP) cross-licensing agreement covering all products and services of Sony as well as ownership of five essential patent families relating to wireless handset technology.
As part of the transaction, Ericsson will receive a cash consideration of EUR 1.05 billion.
“This acquisition makes sense for Sony and Ericsson, and it will make the difference for consumers, who want to connect with content wherever they are, whenever they want. With a vibrant smartphone business and by gaining access to important strategic IP, notably a broad cross-license agreement, our four-screen strategy is in place. We can more rapidly and more widely offer consumers smartphones, laptops, tablets and televisions that seamlessly connect with one another and open up new worlds of online entertainment. This includes Sony’s own acclaimed network services, like the PlayStation Network and Sony Entertainment Network,” said Sir Howard Stringer, Sony’s Chairman, CEO and President. Stringer also noted that the acquisition will afford Sony operational efficiencies in engineering, network development and marketing, among other areas. “We can help people enjoy all our content – from movies to music and games – through our many devices, in a way no one else can.”
“Ten years ago when we formed the joint venture, thereby combining Sony’s consumer products knowledge with Ericsson’s telecommunication technology expertise, it was a perfect match to drive the development of feature phones. Today we take an equally logical step as Sony acquires our stake in Sony Ericsson and makes it a part of its broad range of consumer devices. We will now enhance our focus on enabling connectivity for all devices, using our R&D and industry leading patent portfolio to realize a truly connected world” said Hans Vestberg, President and CEO of Ericsson.
The transaction, which has been approved by appropriate decision-making bodies of both companies, is expected to close in January 2012, subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. As a result of obtaining full control of Sony Ericsson, Sony will consolidate Sony Ericsson from the closing date of the acquisition. The resulting impact of the acquisition to Sony’s consolidated results for the fiscal year ending on March 31, 2012 is currently being evaluated.