Sony CEO says not thinking of splitting off entertainment business

TOKYO Thu Jun 19, 2014 3:42am BST

Sony Corp's President and Chief Executive Officer Kazuo Hirai speaks during its corporate strategy meeting at the company's headquarters in Tokyo May 22, 2014.   REUTERS/Yuya Shino

Sony Corp's President and Chief Executive Officer Kazuo Hirai speaks during its corporate strategy meeting at the company's headquarters in Tokyo May 22, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Yuya Shino

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TOKYO (Reuters) - Sony Corp Chief Executive Kazuo Hirai said on Thursday that the Japanese consumer electronics company was not thinking of splitting off or listing its entertainment business.

Hirai was responding to a question at an annual shareholders meeting.

Sony rebuffed a proposal last year by investor Daniel Loeb, chief of hedge fund Third Point, to partially spin off its entertainment business to unlock shareholder value. Hirai has repeatedly said since then that retaining full ownership of the entertainment unit is important for synergy across Sony.

Hirai also acknowledged at the meeting that Sony had not responded quickly enough to tough market conditions in its electronics division, which he has failed to make profitable despite promises to do so when he took the helm two years ago.

(Reporting by Sophie Knight; Editing by Chris Gallagher)

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