Notice is hereby given that Sony Corporation ("Sony") and Aiwa Co., Ltd. ("Aiwa") have resolved at the meeting of the Board of Directors of each company held today that Aiwa shall become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony by way of stock exchange, and have concluded the memorandum of understanding for stock exchange.
At the end of March 2002, the number of Aiwa Co., Ltd. permanent employees stood at 1,100. This has been reduced to about 500 as of October 1, 2002, most of these belonging to product planning, development and design divisions. The plan to integrate Aiwa's domestic and international production and sales activities into the Sony platform has been implemented. Aiwa's factories in Malaysia and Indonesia have been closed and the employee-count rationalized. In Asia, the Middle East and the USA, the procedure of consigning sales and service activities to Sony sales companies has almost been completed, and nearly all Aiwa sales subsidiaries are now in the process of closing down. In Japan, Sony Marketing (Japan) Inc. now handles Aiwa sales business. In Europe, it is planned to start consigning sales activities from Aiwa to Sony from October. Aiwa's corporate reforms have therefore proceeded on schedule and the conversion to a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony will take place as planned on October 1, 2002.
A key development came in February 1964 when Aiwa introduced the first Japanese cassette tape recorder, the TP-707. Cassette recorders, players, and decks became the company's core product area, and remained so through the late 1970s. In February 1967 Aiwa established another factory in Iwate. Two years later Sony Corporation purchased a majority interest in Aiwa, which became an affiliated company of Sony. Aiwa nevertheless continued to operate in a largely independent fashion, and its stock remained publicly traded.