SONY MOBILE COMMUNICATION AB
Sony Mobile Communications AB (formerly Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB) is a multinational mobile phone manufacturing company headquartered in London, United Kingdom and a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Corporation. It was founded on October 1, 2001 as a joint venture between Sony and the Swedish telecommunications company Ericsson. Sony acquired Ericsson's share in the venture on February 16, 2012. Sony Mobile Communications has research and development facilities in Lund, Sweden; Tokyo, Japan Beijing, China and Silicon Valley, United States. In 2009, it was the fourth-largest mobile phone manufacturer in the world. By 2010, its market share had fallen to sixth place.
In the United States, Ericsson partnered with General Electric in the early nineties, primarily to establish a US presence and brand recognition. Ericsson had decided to obtain chips for its phones from a single source a Philips facility in New Mexico. In March 2000, a fire at the Philips factory contaminated the sterile facility. Philips assured Ericsson and Nokia (their other major customer) that production would be delayed for no more than a week. When it became clear that production would actually be compromised for months, Ericsson was faced with a serious shortage. Nokia had already begun to obtain parts from alternative sources, but Ericsson's position was much worse as production of current models and the launch of new ones was held up. Ericsson, which had been in the mobile phone market for decades, and was the world's third largest cellular telephone handset maker, was struggling with huge losses. This was mainly due to this fire and its inability to produce cheaper phones like Nokia. To curtail the losses, it considered outsourcing production to Asian companies that could produce the handsets for lower cost Speculation began about a possible sale by Ericsson of its mobile phone division, but the company's president...