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Sony Group ESG Briefing FY2021: Evolving Sustainability Management: Initiatives to Create Value Through Sony’s Business

15 Sep, 2021

Evolving Sustainability Management: Initiatives to Create Value Through Sony’s Business

Sony Group Corporation (“Sony” or “the Company”) continues to operate its business with a long-term view centered around “people”, based on its Purpose to “fill the world with emotion, through the power of creativity and technology.” At its ESG Briefing held today, Sony outlined the evolution of its sustainability management, focusing on initiatives that aim to create social value through its diverse business activities and technology. Highlights from the presentation are below. For further details, please refer to the related materials, which are available through Sony’s Investor Relations (IR) website.

1. Dialogue with Stakeholders / Integration of Sustainability Activities into Businesses

Sony greatly values dialogue with its diverse stakeholders, and incorporates insights gained from this interaction into the management of its businesses. As part of this dialogue, ESG Briefings have been held every year since 2018.

Sony is integrating sustainability into its business activities and accelerating the social and environmental measures it is taking through its business and technology. Having identified the most important materiality topics for the overall Sony Group as “technology” and “employees”, the Company has defined and disclosed the type of social value each of its businesses aims to create, and the key priorities relating to sustainability within each business.

2. Initiatives Relating to the Global Environment

Based on its “Road to Zero” long-term environmental plan leading up to 2050, Sony is implementing initiatives to reduce its environmental impact across all Sony Group companies, manufacturing sites, supply chains and product life cycles, based on four perspectives: climate change, resources, chemical substances and biodiversity.

Initiatives in the Imaging & Sensing Solutions (I&SS) Business

At the newly constructed Fab 5 within Nagasaki Technology Center, installation of the latest energy-saving technology has resulted in a 30% improvement in the energy efficiency of clean rooms*. Additionally, 70% of the water used on the production lines is collected and reused.

*Estimate based on data from the Nagasaki Technology Center for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2016 (FY2015).

Sony is proceeding with the installation of solar panels at its manufacturing sites in Japan. In addition, Sony Device Technology (Thailand) Co., Ltd. is moving forward with the largest scale installation of solar panels among any facility within the Sony Group. Together with the purchase of Renewable Energy Certificates, the site is expected to run on 100% renewable electricity by the end of the current fiscal year ending March 31, 2022 (FY2021).

The “IMX500” intelligent vision sensor developed by Sony Semiconductor Solutions Corporation is equipped with AI processing functionality within the logic chip of the image sensor. This technology is expected to support advancement in areas such as the Internet of Things (IoT). Processing data on the sensor itself, at the edge of edge systems, makes it possible to extract only the required metadata (semantic information). As a result, this technology contributes to a reduction in power consumption by lowering the volume of data sent to and processed within the cloud, while also enhancing latency (response speed) and having positive implications for privacy.

“IMX500” is being used in trials of solutions addressing social issues such as traffic congestion and accidents in urban areas, and as part of the effort to reduce the energy consumed by air conditioning systems in buildings.

Initiatives to Enhance Product Energy-Efficiency, and Reduce Plastic in Packaging

Applying Sony’s Environmental Technologies within Society

3. Initiatives Relating to People and Society

The diversity of Sony’s employees is its strength, and the Company continues to promote diversity, equity and inclusion across the Sony Group. At the same time, it also engaged in initiatives focusing on diversity and social justice within society and all of the communities in which it operates.

Inclusion Initiatives in Product Development and the Work Environment

Supporting the Medical and Education Fields, and the Creative Community

Promoting Social Justice and Diversity

4. Governance that Supports Sustainability Initiatives

Sony considers governance to be a framework that enables the Company to carry out its sustainability initiatives, and is continually working to reinforce this structure.

From FY2021 onwards, Sony is integrating sustainability initiatives areas such as employees and the environment that have been identified as key priorities by each business, into their respective Mid-Range plans. It is also setting related KPIs and evaluating the results as an integral measure of business performance.

About Sony Group Corporation

Sony Group Corporation is a creative entertainment company with a solid foundation of technology. Across its six business segments – Game & Network Services; Music; Pictures; Entertainment, Technology & Services; Imaging & Sensing Solutions; and Financial Services – Sony’s purpose is to fill the world with emotion through the power of creativity and technology.

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Cautionary Statement

Statements made in this release with respect to Sony’s current plans, estimates, strategies and beliefs and other statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements about the future performance of Sony. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, those statements using words such as “believe,” “expect,” “plans,” “strategy,” “prospects,” “forecast,” “estimate,” “project,” “anticipate,” “aim,” “intend,” “seek,” “may,” “might,” “could” or “should,” and words of similar meaning in connection with a discussion of future operations, financial performance, events or conditions. From time to time, oral or written forward-looking statements may also be included in other materials released to the public. These statements are based on management’s assumptions, judgments and beliefs in light of the information currently available to it. Sony cautions investors that a number of important risks and uncertainties could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements, and therefore investors should not place undue reliance on them. Please note that Sony discloses the consolidated financial statements and its forecast for consolidated results for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2022 based on International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). Investors also should not rely on any obligation of Sony to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Sony disclaims any such obligation. Risks and uncertainties that might affect Sony include, but are not limited to:

(i)      Sony’s ability to maintain product quality and customer satisfaction with its products and services;

(ii)     Sony’s ability to continue to design and develop and win acceptance of, as well as achieve sufficient cost reductions for, its products and services, including image sensors, game and network platforms, smartphones and televisions, which are offered in highly competitive markets characterized by severe price competition and continual new product and service introductions, rapid development in technology and subjective and changing customer preferences;

(iii)     Sony’s ability to implement successful hardware, software, and content integration strategies, and to develop and implement successful sales and distribution strategies in light of new technologies and distribution platforms;

(iv)     the effectiveness of Sony’s strategies and their execution, including but not limited to the success of Sony’s acquisitions, joint ventures, investments, capital expenditures, restructurings and other strategic initiatives;

(v)     changes in laws, regulations and government policies in the markets in which Sony and its third-party suppliers, service providers and business partners operate, including those related to taxation, as well as growing consumer focus on corporate social responsibility;

(vi)     Sony’s continued ability to identify the products, services and market trends with significant growth potential, to devote sufficient resources to research and development, to prioritize investments and capital expenditures correctly and to recoup its investments and capital expenditures, including those required for technology development and product capacity;

(vii)    Sony’s reliance on external business partners, including for the procurement of parts, components, software and network services for its products or services, the manufacturing, marketing and distribution of its products, and its other business operations;

(viii)   the global economic and political environment in which Sony operates and the economic and political conditions in Sony’s markets, particularly levels of consumer spending;

(ix)     Sony’s ability to meet operational and liquidity needs as a result of significant volatility and disruption in the global financial markets or a ratings downgrade;

(x)     Sony’s ability to forecast demands, manage timely procurement and control inventories;

(xi)     foreign exchange rates, particularly between the yen and the U.S. dollar, the euro and other currencies in which Sony makes significant sales and incurs production costs, or in which Sony’s assets, liabilities and operating results are denominated;

(xii)    Sony’s ability to recruit, retain and maintain productive relations with highly skilled personnel;

(xiii)   Sony’s ability to prevent unauthorized use or theft of intellectual property rights, to obtain or renew licenses relating to intellectual property rights and to defend itself against claims that its products or services infringe the intellectual property rights owned by others;

(xiv)   the impact of changes in interest rates and unfavorable conditions or developments (including market fluctuations or volatility) in the Japanese equity markets on the revenue and operating income of the Financial Services segment;

(xv)    shifts in customer demand for financial services such as life insurance and Sony’s ability to conduct successful asset liability management in the Financial Services segment;

(xvi)   risks related to catastrophic disasters, pandemic disease or similar events;

(xvii)  the ability of Sony, its third-party service providers or business partners to anticipate and manage cybersecurity risk, including the risk of unauthorized access to Sony’s business information and the personally identifiable information of its employees and customers, potential business disruptions or financial losses; and

(xviii)  the outcome of pending and/or future legal and/or regulatory proceedings.

Risks and uncertainties also include the impact of any future events with material adverse impact. The continued impact of COVID-19 could heighten many of the risks and uncertainties noted above. Important information regarding risks and uncertainties is also set forth in Sony’s most recent Form 20-F, which is on file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

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