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OSAKA (Kyodo) Sanyo Electric Co. said Friday it will appoint Vice President Toshimasa Iue to succeed Yukinori Kuwano as president to turn around its business.

Sanyo suffered its biggest group net loss in the just-ended fiscal year.

Sanyo said it will also appoint freelance journalist Tomoyo Nonaka, who has been an external board member of the company since June 2002, as the new chairman and chief executive officer.

Iue, 42, is the eldest son of Chairman Satoshi Iue, 73, and a grandson of the company’s founder, the late Toshio Iue.

Satoshi Iue will stay on the board and continue holding the right to represent the company, while Kuwano will become an adviser for Sanyo, the company said.

Nonaka used to work at NHK. The 50-year-old journalist also worked as a newscaster at a private TV station before joining Sanyo.

“Ms. Nonaka has brought us voices of consumers as an outside director,” Satoshi Iue told a news conference. “We would like to reinvigorate our company by having young people on the board.”

The appointments are expected to be finalized at a board meeting in June after a general meeting of shareholders.

Iue, a native of Hyogo Prefecture, joined Sanyo in 1989. He assumed the post of vice president in June 2002.

The reshuffle is seen as Kuwano stepping down to take the responsibility for the company’s sluggish businesses.

Last month, Sanyo cut its earnings projection for fiscal 2004, saying it expects to incur a group net loss of 121 billion yen, the largest loss since its founding.

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