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CEA Mourns Loss of Industry Leader Norio Ohga

Tue, 04/26/2011 - 5:48am
ARLINGTON, Va. -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)® mourns the loss of Sony’s Norio Ohga. Ohga passed away on Saturday at the age of 81.

“Mr. Ohga changed Sony, created new products and transformed how consumers received entertainment and information,” said Gary Shapiro, CEA president and CEO. “When he was inducted into the CE Hall of Fame in 2004, Mr. Ohga spoke appreciatively about the recognition and yet was humble about his contributions.”

Norio Ohga’s love of music is what led him to technology, which became a lifelong passion. Ohga spent 44 years at Sony, where he was integral to almost all of the company’s major technology and business achievements. Ohga played a key role in the introduction of the Walkman in 1979, the development and establishment of the CD in partnership with Philips in 1982, the MiniDisc in 1992, and the Super Audio CD (SACD) in 1999. In 1993, Ohga established Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCE), which developed the PlayStation and its successor PlayStation 2. Ohga became president of Sony Corp. in 1982 and chairman and CEO. in 1995.

Throughout his years as a Sony executive, Ohga never lost his love of music. He served as a guest conductor of orchestras worldwide, including the Tokyo Symphony, the Tokyo Philharmonic, the Boston Symphony in performances at Tanglewood, the Pittsburgh Symphony, the Israeli Philharmonic and the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. Ohga retired from Sony’s board in January 2003, when he was named honorary chairman.

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