Sega Sammy sells off Japanese arcade business

The sale will officially go through in December

Sega Sammy, the holding company which owns the video game developer Sega, is set to sell off the majority of shares in its arcade division, Sega Entertainment Co, to Genda Inc.

The sale, for 85.1% of the shareholdings, was announced yesterday and will officially go through on December 30. The arcade industry is a key part of Japan’s gaming landscape, but it has been hard hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, with Sega reporting that players at their arcades have “declined remarkably” this year. However, Sega’s development studios and console and PC departments are unaffected by the sale.

Sega Sammy will reveal its quarterly earnings later this month, following a “significant loss” in the previous quarter. With the disruption caused by the pandemic ongoing, it is widely expected to post further losses this time around. The sale to Genda Inc, the fee of which is undisclosed, should offset those losses.

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Sega Entertainment Co owns over 200 Sega arcades in Japan, making it the third-largest amusement company in the country. Back in August, their most famous arcade, the Akihabara 2 in Tokyo, was forced to close through a lack of profits.

Sega arcades have long been a historic part of Japan’s city infrastructure, but Famitsu has confirmed in a Q&A with Sega that the arcades will keep their iconic Sega branding, despite the sale.

In more positive news for Sega fans, the company’s latest game, Yakuza: Like A Dragon, will be released on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS4, and PC on November 10, with a PS5 release coming on March 5. The game features Sega arcades of its own, too.

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