There’s no denying that studio buyouts have been making the headlines in the video game press a lot lately. But when it comes to studio buyouts, the acquisitions made by console builders and platform managers are the ones that mostly come to mind. The big publishers are not left out, however. SEGA, which has already bought several structures in recent years, does not intend to stop there.
SEGA clearly opens the door to future studio acquisitions. The Japanese publisher does not hide it in his latest financial report distributed on the official website of SEGA Sammy. Part of the document is devoted to the interview of Yukio Sugino, president of SEGA Corporation. And it is here that he explains that strengthening his studio network is a central element of SEGA’s strategy:
The network of development studios that SEGA has built is among the largest of the Japanese video game companies. Since purchasing a UK studio in 2005, we have steadily increased the reach of the network and attracted talented staff. The key licenses for each studio have been successful in different regions. They currently play a vital role in our global expansion. To further strengthen these studio networks, we will continue to study studio acquisitions that show potential both in Japan and abroad.
At first glance, buying a studio increases the buyer’s development capacities. This is also used to recover the licenses and other marks possibly held by this studio. But it can also gain expertise in particular genres. Or even improve access to certain markets.
For SEGA, buybacks with multiple advantages
Yukio Sugino here takes the example of the acquisition of Atlus by SEGA in 2013. According to him, it serves to illustrate the many advantages that a good acquisition can represent:
I think back to when we bought and integrated Atlus into our structure. This had two major benefits. The first is the contribution of the highly desirable and globally recognized licenses that Atlus has developed in the field of RPGs. The second was the strong localization capabilities of its US structure. Thanks to these localization capabilities, very Japanese licenses like Yakuza and Hatsune Miku have been translated using phrases that really resonate with local users. And that has increased the quality of the games. The result of all of this is clearly reflected in the increase in scores on Metacritic. Increase which led to an increase in sales (of games) abroad. These types of acquisitions that improve the way we operate will clearly be major strengths in the long run. We will therefore continue to proactively study investments of this type.
A Japanese publisher citizen of the world
Over the past fifteen years, SEGA has carried out six acquisitions of studios located around the world. Among the structures purchased by the Japanese publisher are therefore Atlus, Creative Assembly but also the French from Amplitude Studios. Its last acquisition dates back to 2019 with the purchase of the English from Two Point Studios.
SEGA clearly shows its intentions to be among the leaders in the video game industry. To achieve this, he wishes to develop large-scale projects through his initiative “Super Game“But it also wants to offer its games on as many platforms and services as possible. All through simultaneous (and localized) global releases.
Sonic’s house is not lacking in ambition. And to achieve this ambition, studio buyouts therefore seem inevitable. Such statements seem in any case to show that SEGA has no idea of being redeemed. People who continue to hope for a takeover of SEGA by Microsoft will have to be right.
What do you think of these new statements from SEGA concerning the buybacks? Do you think this is the right strategy? Which studios should be bought by SEGA in your opinion? Give us your opinion in the comments below.