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Flood-hit Sony snubs shoppers to shore up sales

Sets sights on £17bn of non-consumer kit by 2017

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Sony is aiming to drive up sales in non-consumer products, including medical equipment, to an annual ¥2 trillion ($26bn, £16.7) from ¥1.5 trillion within the next five years.

The Japanese company, whose profits have been suffering at the hands of the yen exchange rate and the greatly reduced appetite for TVs and other consumer electronics, is giving itself three to five years to reach the sales target, deputy president Hiroshi Yoshioka said at a press briefing today.

He also said that the floods in Thailand, which wrecked electronics factories, would not have as much impact on the company as it previously thought, Reuters reported.

In October, Sony closed two of its three production facilities in the Asian country after the deadly flooding. As a result, it had to delay the launches of its NEX-7 and Alpha A65 digital cameras. However, just a month later, Sony confirmed that production at the plants had resumed, although it has yet to give a new release date for the cameras, originally destined for launch in November.

The company made a ¥27bn loss in the three months to the end of September, and downgraded its full-year forecast to a loss of ¥90bn due to the floods, rising yen and losses on LCD televisions. In July, Sony was predicting a ¥60bn profit. ®

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