Sony is looking to sell its Vaio PC division in order to focus on its growing smartphone business, according to The Nikkei.
The company is reported to be looking to sell the PC business to Japan Industrial Partners, an investment fund, for as much as JPY50 billion ($489 million).
It is understood that Sony would take a small stake in the firm and may remain in some overseas markets where the Vaio brand is strong, but withdraw from most others.
The sale of the business would push Sony into an annual net loss for the first time in two years, according to The Nikkei.
Sony said it had made no announcement about such a move but reiterated that it “continues to address various options for the PC business”.
Sony is due to announce financials for its fiscal third quarter tomorrow but its Q2 results showed that a strong performance from its smartphone line failed to stop the group from recording a loss for the period.
Sony’s Mobile Products and Communications unit, which also includes PCs, recorded sales and operating revenue for the period of JPY418.6 billion, up 39.3 per cent compared to a year earlier. It also reported a lower operating loss of JPY900 million.
The company attributed the revenue growth and narrowing operating loss to “a significant increase in unit sales of smartphones”, but the unit continued to be hampered by poor PC sales, which fell 25 per cent year on year.
Japan broadcaster NHK reported at the weekend that Lenovo was in talks about a possible joint venture to take over Sony’s overseas PC business. Sony said the report was “inaccurate”.