We last heard in February 2018 that Sony CEO, Kaz Hirai, would soon be stepping down and move into a director-chairman role. This was later confirmed in March 2019 by Hirai himself, with then-CFO Kenichiro Yoshida taking over the role.
This last Tuesday, June 18, was officially the last day for Hirai at both PlayStation and Sony. As previously reported, he will be serving as a senior advisor and “will continue to provide counsel as requested by Sony’s management team.”
Kaz Hirai first joined Sony Music back in 1984, before moving to Sony Computer Entertainment (now Sony Interactive Entertainment) in 1995. He would become CEO and president in 2012, with a mission to “ensure Sony continues to be a company that provides customers with kando–to move them emotionally–and inspires and fulfils their curiosity.”
Now, the reins are in the hands of Yoshida, who stepped into the role on April 1, 2018. On Yoshida, Hirai shared that he “possesses the breadth of experience and perspective, as well as the unwavering leadership qualities required to manage Sony’s diverse array of businesses, and as such is the ideal person to drive the company forward into the future.”
Yoshida also set the aim “to build on the business foundations established by Mr. Hirai, and execute further reform measures that enhance our competitiveness as a global enterprise, and enable us to realize long-term profit growth.”
In an interview with Variety, the decision to retire from Hirai was partially due to him being “worn down from the travel schedule he’s maintained during the past six years as CEO.” With that no longer an issue, the ex-CEO plans to spend more time with his family back in California.