Howard Stringer (Jason Merritt / Getty Images )
Sony Corp. Chairman Howard Stringer will retire from the Tokyo-based media and electronics conglomerate in June.
The 71-year-old former chief executive and president of the company made the announcement in a speech to the Japan Society in New York on Friday.
In the speech, Stringer said that he planned to focus on "new opportunities," including philanthropic work in the fields of medicine and education.
"So I will remain busy, though perhaps not such a frequent flier on Japan Air Lines," Stringer said, adding that he would continue to serve as chairman of the American Film Institute.
Stringer plans to step down at the end of his current term, which coincides with Sony's June annual meeting.
Kazuo Hirai, president and chief executive of Sony, said in a statement that Stringer was instrumental in the victory of the Sony-backed Blu-ray format over HD-DVD, expanding the company’s film and music businesses and restructuring the 67-year-old firm.
"He will be deeply missed by all of us at Sony," Hirai said.
Stringer, the first non-Japanese person to be Sony's chief executive, relinquished that role -- and the title of president -- in spring 2012. Stringer, who earlier in his long career was a journalist and headed CBS, had assumed the CEO position in 2005.
During his tenure atop Sony, the company struggled to keep up with competitors such as South Korea's Samsung Group and Apple Inc. in the electronics business -- losing ground in key areas such as television and mobile phone sales.
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