undoubtedly one of the largest targets during the string of hacks that occurred
thus far in 2011. Several sectors of the consumer electronics company were
hacked, including the PlayStation Network, the Sony Online
Entertainment (SOE) database, the Sony Sweepstakes site, Sony BMG Greece
website, Sony's Japanese websites, Sony Canada, Sony BMG Netherlands, Sony BMG
Belgium, and Sony Pictures Russia.
These hacks placed a bright spotlight on Sony's security issues, and have
caused a lot of trouble for the company. Just yesterday, several investors
called on Sony Chief Executive Sir Howard Stringer to step down, since his ways of running the company
threw it into this disaster.
But Stringer refused to do so. Instead, he took a 16 percent pay cut in the "just
ended" fiscal year.
Now, Kazuo Hirai, president and group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment
Inc. (SCEI), will become chairman of the video games unit on September 1.
He will be replacing SCEI Chairman Akira Sato, who is retiring on August 31.
Briton Andrew House, who is currently the head of the video games unit's
European branch, will take over as the new president and CEO of SCEI on
September 1 as well.
While this may seem like a setback for Hirai, analysts see it as a way to move Hirai into a position that will
eventually allow him to run the company, since Hirai is a prime candidate to
"He's in pole position to head the whole company, so he needs to focus on
that, which is probably why they sought out a successor for the video games
business," said analyst Nobuo Kurahashi of Mizuho Investors' Securities.