Sony Stock Hits 10-Year High

Kazuo Hirai and Kenichiro Yoshida - One Time Use Only - Getty - H 2018
Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP/Getty Images

The conglomerate becomes the most valuable Japanese electronics maker for the first time in 15 years, as investors and analysts have highlighted the profitability of films, music and gaming.

Sony Corp. stock on Tuesday closed at its highest level since January 2008 in Tokyo to become the biggest Japanese electronics maker by market capitalization for the first time in more than 15 years.

Sony closed at a 10-year high of ?5,705 ($51.30) on Tuesday, following a 4.5 percent rise Monday, taking its total market value to around $65 billion, allowing it to overtake industrial instrument and equipment maker Keyence. The stock is up more than 12 percent so far this year. 

Other Japanese electronics giants, such as Sharp, Panasonic and Toshiba, have also been hit in recent decades by a shifting global marketplace, but they have yet to emulate the recovery Sony enjoyed under Kaz Hirai and Kenichiro Yoshida. Former CFO Yoshida succeeded Hirai as CEO on April 1.

Analysts have lauded financial momentum at the conglomerate. As Sony now earns much of its profits from entertainment, music, video games and, in Japan, financial services, investors see it as less exposed to the risks of a potential U.S.-China trade war.

With Sony's gaming, film and music divisions forecast to provide a combined 51 percent of its profits for the current fiscal year ending March 2019, some have highlighted that the conglomerate has become more an entertainment than an electronics giant.

However, others have pointed out that the leveraging of Sony's positions across its varying business divisions has long been an aim of the company. 

"Sony, in its corporate DNA, has always believed in the synergies between hardware, software and services," Damian Thong, Sony analyst at Macquarie Capital in Tokyo, told The Hollywood Reporter earlier this year. "Yoshida-san isn't tethered to any particular idea of what Sony is as a set of businesses. His focus is on profitability and longevity."