Sony are said to be nearing a deal which would see them buy out their mobile phone partners Ericsson for over $1 billion.
The 50:50 joint venture that led to the Sony Ericsson brand ten years ago would come to an end, with Sony again making “Sony” branded handsets. The plan would be to integrate mobile operations with the company’s smartphone, gaming, PC and tablet arms in order to synchronise strategies and cut costs.
The deal could end up costing Sony as much as $1.7 billion to acquire full control of the sixth-largest mobile phone manufacturer.
While a unified approach to the company’s output would likely be a positive one, allowing Sony to more clearly define their mark on the smartphone market, shareholders have began to shake following the rumours.
Fearful that the move would over-burden Sony’s finances, stocks dropped 3.3 percent at 1,422 yen on Friday afternoon, compared with a 1.4 percent gain in the benchmark Nikkei 225 index, according to Reuters.