As of Thursday, a shift at the top of Sony became official. Michael Lynton was named Sony Corp. of America CEO, effective on June 27. Starting the same date, the video game and electronics units of Sony will report to its Japanese headquarters. Both used to form part of Sony America. Lynton will remain as Sony Pictures Entertainment’s chairman in Culver City. He will also take command of Sony/ATV Music Publishing and Sony Music Entertainment.
In Lynton’s new role, Martin Bandier the Chairman of Sony/ATV and Doug Morris the CEO of Sony Music will report to him. Lynton is replacing Howard Stringer at Sony America who has stepped down as CEO in Tokyo at Sony Corp and has handed the reins effective April 1 to Kazuo Hirai.
The change was expected and now one executive will be in charge of all of the entertainment assets of Sony and will be answerable directly to Hirai. It has been rumored that Sony may want to spin off or sell its entertainment assets and grouping them under one umbrella could make it easier.
Lynton has pledged to unite the technology and content businesses in Sony, a pledge that has been long promised by Sony but largely unfulfilled. Hirai said in a prepared statement that Lynton would be a key member of his management team.
In another shuffling of their executives, Sony America has announced that chief financial officer and executive vice president Rob Wiesenthal will not remain on to work alongside Lynton.