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Sony CEO says aims to expand TV sales from 2014

Kazuo Hirai, president and CEO of Sony Corporation, speaks during a Sony news conference at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas
Kazuo Hirai, president and CEO of Sony Corporation, speaks during a Sony news conference at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas

TOKYO (Reuters) - Sony, which has spent several years shrinking its television unit, plans to expand sales from next year once the business has stopped losing money, chief executive Kazuo Hirai said on Thursday.

"After ending losses we want to focus at growing sales in the emerging economies," Hirai told a press roundtable at Sony's headquarters in Tokyo.

Sony and other Japanese makers have been hurt badly by competition from foreign rivals lead by Korea's Samsung Electronics <005930.KS>, forcing them to halt output of unprofitable models and trim costs in a bid to compete.

Japan's share of the world's flat panel TV market this year likely shrank to 31 percent compared with 41 percent in 2010, according to the Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association.

Hirai last year said the maker of Bravia televisions is doubling down on consumer electronics, with a focus on mobile phones and tablets, cameras and gaming rather than TVs.

(Reporting by Reiji Murai; Writing by Tim Kelly; Editing by Richard Pullin)

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