Sega Sammy sells off majority of physical arcade & amusement center operations

85% of Sega Sammy's entertainment business shares are going to Japanese company GENDA. Sega/Atlus video game operations are not expected to be affected.

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As the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the world throughout much of 2020, the entertainment and amusement industry has been one of the hardest areas hit. Where video game development and events have certainly been delayed, canceled, or postponed, pivots were possible. Arcades and amusement centers have little opportunity for such a pivot. It can account for a major reason of why Sega Sammy has announced it will be selling off a majority of its physical entertainment and amusement business shares.

Sega Sammy released an official announcement of this dealing on November 4, 2020. According to a translation of the official statement, Sega Sammy will be selling 85.1% of its physical entertainment and amusement business dealings to Japanese mega corporation GENDA. This will include ownership and operation of a large portion of Sega Sammy’s arcades, pachinko parlors, and machine rental services. Despite the sale, ownership and operation of Sega and Atlus video game development and distribution is not expected to be affected in the sale.

With launches even up to and including Virtua Fighter and House of Dead pachislot machines coming late in 2019, Sega Sammy has been forced to re-examine its efforts in the physical amusement industry in the face of COVID-19.
With launches even up to and including Virtua Fighter and House of Dead pachislot machines coming late in 2019, Sega Sammy has been forced to re-examine its efforts in the physical amusement industry in the face of COVID-19.

It’s really a no-brainer why Sega Sammy is making this sale. COVID-19 has done tremendous damage to revenues of arcades and amusement centers in Japan, and despite Japan beginning to recover form the pandemic, there’s still a lack of faith in the full resurgence of the business anytime soon. Sega Sammy’s statement expresses as much.

As Amusement Center Operations area in Entertainment Business is strongly affected by COVID-19, utilization of facilities has declined remarkably, and a significant loss was recorded at Q1 of the fiscal year ending March 2021. In addition, despite the recent recovery trend, the situation remains uncertain.

As such, the decision seems set towards keeping Sega Sammy’s video game market afloat. With development and launch of games like the recent and enjoyable Yakuza: Like a Dragon, there’s little doubt that Sega Sammy is keeping its priorities in order in regards to what will continue to profit the company most. Stay tuned for further news on this story as details and information become available.

News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. When he's not handing out beatdowns in the latest fighting games, exploring video game history, or playing through RPGs with his partner, he's searching for new food and drinks in the constant pursuit of good times with good people inside and outside the South Texas area. You can also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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