There are many ways of analyzing a business. Perhaps one of the best ways to do this is by creating a SWOT - that is, Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats -- analysis. This sheds light on the good and bad points of a business in terms of its strengths and weaknesses, which are mostly internal in nature; as well as opportunities and threats, which are external in nature.
Here is a SWOT analysis of Sony Corporation (NYS: SNE) , which once was the undisputed leader in the consumer electronics space. Let's take a brief look at the results for Sony.
Sony has built a brand. This is highlighted by the fact that the company was tagged in a 2011 survey as Asia's most valued brand. The company is synonymous with technological excellence and has a rich heritage of technological expertise. Besides creating the Trinitron Color television, VCR, and Walkman, the company helped develop the magnetic recording tape, the compact disc, and the Blu-Ray disc, used today as a medium for high-definition video playback. Its latest innovation, a Crystal LED television, was well received at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Out of all its products at present, Sony's success with the Playstation is most noteworthy -- it has been successful since inception, and still sees tremendous consumer demand. A strong foothold in the entertainment industry with Sony Music and Sony Pictures has been beneficial to the company by offsetting losses in its consumer-products division.
The high cost of media production, especially in its television business, has affected the company's pricing strategy. Its television business has lost an equivalent of $6.3 billion for eight years in a row. It's also losing market share to manufacturers, such as LG and Samsung. While diversifying into too many business...