Sony to Sell Off Battery Business to Murata

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While Sony might be a name that we associate with all sorts of technology, not limited to great 4K TVs and pretty decent smartphones, the Japanese giant also makes their own components for devices, too. While Samsung is one of the few device manufacturers out there that can genuinely claim to make the vast majority of the components in their smartphones, Sony isn’t too far behind. It’s well-documented that Sony makes some of the best camera hardware in the world, and this extends to teeny, tiny smartphone cameras as well. In fact, many of 2016’s greatest devices have sensors sourced from Sony, with more on their way. One thing that we might not have thought of Sony making, is their own batteries, which sadly seems to becoming to an end, as Sony has agreed to sell their battery division to Japanese firm, Murata.

Sony and Murata have signed a memorandum of understanding that the latter will absorb the former’s “Sony Energy Devices Corporation” as well as its operations in China and Singapore. It’s worth noting that this memorandum is a non-binding one, so there’s a chance that such a deal might not ever be reached, but with Sony looking to streamline things and keep their core money spinners, namely their Camera and PlayStation divisions going strong, cutting dead weight seems like a smart move. With this deal, which is said to be completed by Q1 of 2017, if it ever goes ahead, would see Murata Manufacturing, a Chinese name known for creating smaller components such as capacitors and other essential pieces of the puzzle inherit some of Sony Group’s R&D facilities in Japan and elsewhere related to battery technology, too.

For Sony, this is perhaps a way of getting rid of a division that doesn’t quite bring in the sort of money that they need it to, and in the wake of their purchase of Toshiba’s imaging division, the firm could do with a cash infusion. It could however, be something that Sony comes to regret. There’s no telling what Sony’s Energy Devices division is currently researching, or how far they’ve come, but with battery technology working their way into everything from cars to drones, Sony could be walking away from a future profitable asset. Regardless, this move will probably enable Sony to streamline and better focus on core products and if nothing else, serves as a bittersweet reminder of just how big Sony have been at one point in time.