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Sega Leaves Arcade Business After 50 Years

Sega announced last year that most of its major Japanese arcade stores would be taken over by Genda Inc, while still retaining the Sega brand, while Sega also sold its western arcade division. Now, Genda has announced that it will be rebranding the rest of the former Segas slot under its own Gigo “Into the Game Oasis” label. Segas malls across Japan will be renamed GiGO, according to Genda CEO Takashi Kataoka. The good news is that Sega Entertainment only deals in arcade games, and the branch of the company that produces and distributes their actual arcade games is different, so we’ll still see Sega games in arcades, not Sega’s own games.

Sega Leaves Arcade Business

Credit @ Sega

It’s the end of an era where Sega is selling off the remnants of its arcade business to Genda, though that shouldn’t mean the end of Sega’s arcade games. In 2020, Sega sold just over 85% of its division to rival company Genda due to significant losses caused by the coronavirus pandemic. In 2020, when the effects of the pandemic were first felt, Sega sold 85% of its shares to Genda Inc. and has now sold its remaining shares to go out of business entirely. While it’s sad to see the end of an era in Segas history, that doesn’t mean Sega will stop making true arcade games. Sega is known for some of the most iconic arcade games in the world, including OutRun, Virtua Fighter, Daytona USA, and more.

Arcade games around the world have been in decline for many years, but in Japan, they are dying out much more slowly. It looks like the Covid-19 pandemic has put an end to Segas’ history in the arcade industry. When the coronavirus pandemic suspended almost all public events in 2020, Segas’ arcade division was particularly hard hit, eventually leading its parent company Sega to sell 85% of its arcade and entertainment center business to Genda Inc. The last home of Segas consoles, marking the end of the company’s eighteen years of existence in the console market. Poor sales in Japan resulted in Segas’ consolidated net loss of Yen 42.88 billion ($404 million) in the fiscal year ending March 2000, which followed a similar loss of Yen 42.881 billion the previous year to third Segas’ annual loss in a row.

Sega Leaves Arcade Business

In a tweet from Gendas Chairman Kataoka Takashi, it is explained that GIGO means “Get caught in the gaming oasis”. Kataoka is grateful to Sega for the story and says the rebranding will start in Ikebukuro, Akihabara, and Shinjuku and spread across the country.

It’s sad to see the end of the Segas historical era, but that doesn’t mean Sega will stop making true arcade games. We were already at the end of the gaming era, but as the old-school gamer and yesterday’s Sega fan admitted, this is sad news. Saving is getting harder in the digital age, and as Sega leaves the arcade scene – the most tangible part of gaming – it seems like part of gaming’s history will soon be forgotten. As of January 2022, GENDA owned about 85.1% of the arcade and arcade company, but it acquired the final 14.9% following a recently announced deal, effectively taking SEGA out of the arcade business after more than 50 years.



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