Majority of SNK Playmore Bought by Chinese Companies
SNK Playmore has been acquired by a a group of Chinese investors, with Ledo Millennium paying $63.5 million for 81.25 percent of the company's shares, which was purchased from former SNK CEO Eikichi Kawasaki and his wife Natsuyo Kawasaki.
Chinese companies Oriental Securities and Wuhu Shunrong Sanqi have also joined together to invest in Ledo Millenium to be part of the purchase. Oriental Securities subsidiary Dongfang Xinghui will be the majority shareholder.
snk started in the 1978 as Shin Nihon Kikaku and created a series of arcade titles in the 80s before releasing the Neo Geo standard, which hosted the majority of SNK's most popular games. However, in 2001 the company ran into financial troubles and the founder, Eikichi Kawasaki, started another company known as Playmore. He then purchased SNK's IP and renameD his new venture SNK Playmore. In recent years the company has struggled to gain the attention of a new generation of players.
An attempt to revive the Neo Geo brand - a handheld console called the Neo Geo X - gained media attention but ended in a confusing farce as SNK Playmore took legal action against the maker of the device, Tommo Inc.
Dongfang Xingui CEO Zheng Jianhui has stated that he aims to emulate "the Marvel formula" when it comes to making the most of SNK Playmore's vast selection of IP, which includes Fatal Fury, King of Fighters, Metal Slug and Samurai Shodown. Xingui also aims to collaborate with Chinese companies to develop games, anime, manga, TV shows, and movies.
Whether the company will make a move back into arcade or continue with it's previous focus on the home/mobile market is yet to be announced.