PlayStation boss Kazuo Hirai has been promoted to executive deputy president of Sony, and may take over as chief executive when current incumbent Howard Stringer retires.
Reuters reports Hirai, currently head of Sony’s network products and services division (including Sony Computer Entertainment and the PlayStation Brand), will take up his new duties on April 1.
The promotion, coupled with a restructuring of Sony into two core divisions, puts Hirai at the head of over half of Sony’s operations, second only to CEO, president, and chairman Stringer.
Stringer is expected to resign his posts in 2013, leaving Hirai naturally positioned to take up Sony’ reins.
Both Stringer and Hirai have seen major improvements to Sony’s profitability during their tenures.
Sony has divided its operations under two broad umbrellas.
Hirai’s area of responsibility is consumer products and services, and accounts for 60 percent of Sony’s operations.
The second division, led by Hiroshi Yoshioka, covers Sony’s electronics design and manufacturing, supplying semiconductors, batteries and other components to business partners.