Industry experts are speculating Sony‘s film and television divisions could be headed for a sale following news that Kaz Hirai will be stepping down from his position of Chief Executive. He’ll be replaced by Kenichiro Yoshida, who is the Chief Financial Officer.
According to an industry reporter. They told Deadline that Yoshida is reportedly “not keen on the entertainment business,” which is leading to a speculation Sony is “ready for a sale.”
Sony’s stock closed at $51.99 on Friday, rising 6%, the change could open the door to a potential sale of the company’s assests, which includes franchises such as Spider Man and Ghostbusters.
It is reported that Sony will continue to “look for opportunities to grow with its film and television divisions, whether through an acquisition or merger.”
It was reported by Deadline, Yoshida is a numbers guy with a more cautious outlook. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, he said he sees Sony as a technology company, and one that should keep consumer electronics at its core.
Sony is currently engaged in a deal with Disney‘s Marvel Studios who co-produced 2017’s summer blockbuster Spider-Man: Homecoming which pulled in $880 million worldwide. A sale could result in those rights reverting back to the Disney-owned studio anyway, as the film license agreement doesn’t allow the transfer of rights to another company.
The studio also produced Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle, a blockbuster hit which earned over $825 million worldwide since its December 20th release. It was so successful that Sony Chairman Tom Rothman wants to pit a sequel against Star Wars: Episode IX in 2019.
Disney, who recently purchased 21st Century Fox’s film and television assets in a landmark $52.4 billion dollar deal, would be a favorite for many people to purchase Sony, should they consider selling; but the company is already facing opposition over the merger which could take 12 to 18 months. But if Sony were to ease out of the film and television business they could sell off their properties separately, which would allow Disney’s Marvel Studios to take complete control over the live-action rights for the iconic webhead.
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