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Rediff.com  » Business » Sunil Nayyar: The man who changed Sony's fortunes in India

Sunil Nayyar: The man who changed Sony's fortunes in India

April 03, 2015 12:34 IST

Nayyar's efforts in making India a success story for the Japanese electronics giant led to his elevation this week to its consumer electronics business in the US.

In 2006, when Sunil Nayyar moved to India as head of sales for Sony, it was losing out to Korean rivals Samsung and LG, as it could not match them on price. 

India was an important market, but in terms of revenue, its contribution was minuscule to Sony's global earnings. 

Close to a decade later, India has become the fourth largest revenue contributor for Sony globally.

Nayyar's efforts in making India a success story for the Japanese electronics giant led to his elevation this week to its consumer electronics business in the US, the largest market for the company.

Nayyar's promotion makes him the first Indian executive at Sony to move to a management role in the US directly from India.

However, he is not the only Indian on Sony's US leadership team. The president of Sony's mobile communications business in the US, Ravi Nookala, is also Indian. 

In his new role, Nayyar, 46, will take care of a division that contributes almost 65 per cent of Sony's revenue in the US and accounts for about 17 per cent of the company's global sales.

His crowning achievement over the past decade was his success in building a wide retail network in India. It contributed in no small measure to Sony's revival in the country. 

Nayyar has been elevated at a time when Sony is in the midst of a restructuring.

The company is targeting to split the consumer electronics, television and home theatre business into a separate self-sustaining unit later this year.

Amid the reorganisation, which will first be carried out in the US, China and Japan, Nayyar's elevation hints at his growing importance in the ongoing overhaul. 

An alumnus of IMT Ghaziabad, Nayyar joined Sony West Asia's sales forces in 1996 and was responsible for growing markets in North and East Africa, Russia, Lebanon, Syria and other Gulf Cooperation Council countries. Before joining Sony, he had worked with Kwality Walls. 

When Nayyar is not busy crunching sales numbers, he can be found listening to Guns N' Roses and Michael Jackson or reading classics like Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged.

Though not a movie buff, The Godfather and Sholay are among his favourites. He is also a connoisseur of fine spirits, although, he says, he prefers fresh fruit juice to other beverages any day.

Among restaurants, the Set'z in Vasant Kunj in Delhi is his top choice.

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