Sony doubles down on entertainment

STORY: Sony expects to sell 25 million PlayStation consoles this year.

That would be a record for any generation of the device.

The gains are expected as supply chain problems ease off.

But a strategy update Thursday (May 19) saw less focus on hardware.

Financial services and entertainment content were the subject instead.

Chief Executive Kenichiro Yoshida has been watching rival Nintendo, literally.

He said he’d recently seen its Super Mario Bros. movie, which has been a box office smash.

Yoshida said that was testament to the value of creating lovable characters, and said Sony would invest in similar content to drive growth.

The company wants to boost synergy between games, music and movies.

It cited the success of its hit TV drama “The Last of Us”, which helped drive sales of the associated game.

Sony may also spin off some of its financial services unit, which includes life insurance and banking.

That could come in two to three years, with any capital raised likely used to boost growth sectors including entertainment and image sensors.

Analysts say the move will make Sony more of a pure-play entertainment company, though the firm will retain a stake in the financial unit.