Sony India has slashed about a seventh of its local workforce, totaling more than 120 jobs across functions. The company, which primarily caters to the market’s upper and upper-mid segments, confirmed that it has cut these jobs recently. In addition, Sony India's television business head Sachin Rai has also resigned, though his exit is being touted as a voluntary exit and not part of the downsizing exercise.
The cuts come as the Japanese electronics major struggles to sell its pricier television sets in a market where cheaper Chinese alternatives are increasingly gaining more ground in the midst of an overall slowdown in TV sales.
In addition, the company is also merging smaller branch offices and roles now deemed redundant to hold down costs. Of late, it has merged multiple offices in Surat with Ahmedabad and Gurgaon with Delhi.
A Sony India spokesperson said the current market scenario has posed several challenges for the company to be able to sustain growth in the short and medium-term. He added that this requires the company to relook at its business strategy, including human resources, and it is taking corrective measures to make itself more agile, efficient and robust in the long term.
The cuts come as firstly consumers do not want to pay the premium that Sony is charging after the entry of the aggressive Chinese brands and secondly because it appears to be losing connect with younger consumers who are opting for brands such as OnePlus, TCL, Xiaomi or even Samsung. This is reflected in the revenues which fell for the fourth consecutive year in FY19 along with the net profit taking a beating for the first time. This is further exacerbated by the slowdown in TV sales as consumers switch to screening more content on their smartphones. While slashing jobs maybe a handy recourse in the short term, but for long term growth, the company needs to focus on getting back in the game.