NU Online News Service, Oct. 28, 2003, 3:43 p.m. EST – The Sony Corp., Tokyo, says it plans to set up a financial holding company in preparation for an eventual initial public offering.

The new company will consist of Sony’s three financial businesses: Sony Life Insurance Company Ltd., Sony Assurance Inc. and Sony Bank Inc. Sony hopes to get approval from financial regulators to establish the holding company by April 2004.

Sony says it made the move in response to deregulation and the resulting market changes.

“We believe that there is an increasing need to offer customers integrated services tailored to their individual needs,” the company says. “Sony will exploit the strategic linkages between the life insurance, non-life insurance and banking services to offer these kinds of integrated solutions.”

Sony says it will consider making the financial holding company public when it believes that each of the three financial businesses has a viable growth strategy.