Sony Pictures' Michael Lynton to Add Oversight of All Sony U.S. Entertainment Assets

11:06 AM PST 03/21/2012 by Georg Szalai
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He is likely to add the title of Sony Corp. of America CEO, with general counsel Nicole Seligman becoming president.

NEW YORK -- Sony Pictures Entertainment chairman and CEO Michael Lynton is expected to add oversight of Sony Corp.'s other U.S. entertainment assets as early as next week in a rejig of the conglomerate's U.S. operations, sources confirmed. 

With Howard Stringer set to hand over as of April 1 the Sony Corp. CEO title to Kazuo Hirai, who is seen focusing on turning around the electronics business, Lynton will add the title of CEO of Sony Corp. of America, the Financial Times reported.

A Sony source said that with power shifting to Tokyo, Lynton will add oversight of Sony Music, led by Doug Morris, and Sony ATV, a music publishing joint venture with Michael Jackson’s estate, which is led by Martin Bandier, whose contract was extended March 19. It wasn't clear if Lynton would also add supervision of the Sony video games business in the U.S. to his duties.

But Lynton, who will remain in Los Angeles, is expected to have mostly formal oversight over the music businesses to represent them vis-a-vis Tokyo but is expected to leave day-to-day operations to the music heads, the source said.

The FT also reported that Sony general counsel Nicole Seligman is likely to add the title of Sony Corp. of America  president to supervise corporate functions.

What would the changes mean for Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment? A source confirmed the FT report that said that her partnership with Lynton at Sony Pictures Entertainment is not expected to change but that Pascal is expected to report to Lynton in his role as Sony Corp. of America CEO. Currently, both report to Stringer.

As far as Sony's music business goes, the executive rejig is likely to also change the role of Rob Wiesenthal, executive vp and CFO of Sony Corp. of America. After putting together the proposed acquisition of EMI, he is expected to become involved in the operations of Sony ATV, a source said.

The New York Post first reported that Lynton was expected to add oversight over all Sony U.S. entertainment assets.

Two sources suggested that the new operational structure could be announced as early as next week. Sony reps declined comment.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com

Twitter: @georgszalai

 

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