Bert Nordberg, who has been the CEO of Sony Ericsson (now Sony Mobile) since the summer of 2009, is going to lose his job on May 16th. His successor will be Kunimasa Suzuki (pictured above, left). According to BusinessWeek, Suzuki has been with Sony since 1984 and has spent the last decade of his career overseeing the company’s VIAO computer division. Other than that, we really don’t know anything about this dude. We will say this however, it’s telling that the head of Sony Mobile will now be a Japanese guy as opposed to a Swedish guy. This makes sense when you think about Sony’s new strategy. They want to make mobile a huge part of their business, rightfully so, and this move clearly demonstrates that.
“Kuni has a vast experience in product planning and management in the information technology and mobile product business, as well as experience of cultivating business in emerging markets. He is a strong leader and the right person to oversee Sony Mobile Communications as we establish a new business structure as ‘One Sony’ intended to reinforce and accelerate our overall business management.” – Kazuo Hirai, CEO of Sony Corporation
It should be noted that it’s going to take at least a year or two for us to feel Suzuki’s impact. Many of the devices that Sony will come out with this year, and likely next year, have been in development for years. That being said, what should Sony do to get themselves back on top?
The easiest place to start is design. Look at Sony’s CLIÉ portfolio of personal digital assistants and try not to drool. For half a decade, between 2000 and 2005, Sony made some of the hottest mobile devices on the face of the planet. But then they just stopped. Boom. Just like that. Bring the folks who created the CLIÉ back, and the rest will sort itself out.