Sony Ericsson is a joint venture established in 2001 by the Japanese consumer electronics company Sony Corporation and the Swedish telecommunications company Ericsson to make mobile phones. The stated reason for this venture is to combine Sony's consumer electronics expertise with Ericsson's technological leadership in the communications sector. Both companies have stopped making their own mobile phones.
The company's global management is based in Hammersmith, London, and it has research & development teams in Sweden, Japan, China, Canada, the Netherlands, the United States, India and the United Kingdom.
Sony Ericsson has approximately 8,000 employees worldwide. With a 43% annual growth rate, it became the fastest-growing mobile vendor in Q3 2006 compared to Motorola with a rate of 39%. Today, Sony Ericsson is the second-most profitable phone maker behind Nokia and has achieved this status because of its growth in high end handset market.
The company's current President is as of November 1st Hideki Komiyama, who will be replacing Miles Flint, and the Corporate Executive Vice President is Anders Runevad. The company's global advertising agency is Saatchi & Saatchi.
Ericsson, which had been in the cellular phone market for decades, decided to divest this business in 2001 following huge losses. Ericsson had decided to source chips for its phones from a single source, a Philips facility in New Mexico. In March 2000 a fire at the Philips factory contaminated the sterile facility. Philips assured Ericsson and Nokia (the other major customer of the facility) that production would be delayed by less than a week. When it became clear that production would actually be compromised for months, Ericsson was faced with a serious shortage. Nokia had already begun to obtain parts from alternative sources, but Ericsson's position was much worse as both production of current models and the launch of new ones was held up.
Sony Ericsson is the global title sponsor of the Women's Tennis Association (WTA), and works with the Association to promote the Tour in over 80 cities.
Sony Ericsson acquired UIQ Technology, a Swedish software company from Symbian Ltd. in February, 2007. UIQ will remain an independent company, Miles Flint announced.
On October 15 2007, Sony Ericsson announced on Symbian Smartphone Show that they will be selling half of its UIQ share to Motorola thus making UIQ technology owned by two large mobile phone companies.