Updated on August 29, 2019
Sony Corporation and its subsidiaries may acquire and/or hold shares of other listed companies for the purpose of expanding Sony's business portfolio, promoting certain businesses within Sony and enhancing Sony's relationships with the companies whose shares it holds. Sony's policy regarding shareholdings of listed companies (excluding Sony's subsidiaries), and its policy for exercising voting rights are as follows:
Sony and its subsidiaries decide whether to acquire or continue to hold shares of listed companies (excluding the acquisition and holding of shares by Sony’s listed subsidiaries, and Sony’s shareholding in its own listed subsidiaries) based on an appropriate examination of each investment, and choose to engage in such shareholding only if it is judged to further Sony's business purposes and to have sufficient economic rationale. If it is determined that investments do not meet these criteria, Sony and its subsidiaries will avoid or reduce exposure to such holdings.
In all cases where Sony and its subsidiaries hold shares in listed companies (excluding shares held by Sony’s listed subsidiaries, and Sony’s shareholdings in its own listed subsidiaries) for reasons other than for the sole purpose of investment, Sony carries out a yearly review to assess the rationale for shareholding, the importance of Sony's business relationship with each company whose shares it holds (taking into account the progress of, and outlook for, any anticipated business collaboration between Sony and said company), and any anticipated positive impact of such shareholdings on Sony's business relationship with the company. In addition, Sony also assesses the appropriateness of these shareholdings by considering the potential of each investment to contribute to mid-to long-term value creation in the Sony Group, via an assessment of expected return on investment and cost of capital. These evaluations are first carried out on the management side, after which the Board of Directors (the “Board”), which is responsible for overseeing business operation, carries out its own assessment based on the result of the evaluations by the management side.
Based on the above policy, at the Board meeting held on June 18, 2019, Sony carried out an assessment of the rationale for its and its subsidiaries’ shareholdings in listed companies (excluding shares held by Sony’s listed subsidiaries, and Sony’s shareholdings in its own listed subsidiaries) as of March 31, 2019. As a result of the assessment, it was determined that Sony should consider reducing its exposure to certain holdings, which are currently being reviewed.
Sony believes in the importance of enhancing the corporate value of the listed companies whose shares it holds, and Sony's own corporate value in turn, through the exercise of its voting rights. Accordingly, Sony aims to exercise its voting rights with the intention of increasing each company's mid- to long-term corporate value, after a comprehensive consideration of both the significance and economic rationale of its shareholdings, and the details of proposals. Sony has established internal rules determining what factors should be taken into account when considering proposals about matters such as the appropriation of retained earnings, the appointment of directors, statutory auditors and accounting auditors, as well as shareholder proposals. Through these rules, Sony makes appropriate decisions regarding the exercise of its voting rights.
Should a company who holds shares of Sony’s stock express the intention to sell such shares, Sony will not attempt to obstruct such sale by threatening to limit business transactions with said company, and will not engage in any transactions that would harm the common interests of the company or its shareholders.