After wavering for a few hours and trying to silence the rumors with a bland denial that sounded more like a “no comment”, Sega Sammy Holdings finally sent a press release officially announcing the acquisition of Index Corporation by Sega Corporation’s newly formed wholly owned subsidiary Sega Dream Corporation. Under the agreement Sega will take over all the operations previously conducted by Index.
According to the press release the business transfer includes the Digital Game business (design and development of console games and social games) the Contents & Solutions business (delivery of contents, development of systems, consigned development related to amusement machines, internet advertising, etc.), the Amusement business (development and sales of commercial amusement machines) and related businesses.
This also includes tangible and intangible fixed assets like Atlus and its intellectual properties, but not liabilities and interest-bearing debts.
Sega performed the acquisition due to Index’s “excellent track record” in the design of content for mobile phones, and because of the value of the prominent IPs owned by Atlus like Shin Megami Tensei and Etrian Odyssey.
The company believes that the acquisition will create profitable synergies and allow it to achieve a steady flow of revenue through gaining access to popular IPs in the home console market, to facilitate an income growth from the online PC market and the smartphone market, and to maximize the value of the acquired IPs by deploying them in the pachislot, pachinko and arcade markets.
Unsurprisingly, turns out that Atlus was not acquired by either Nintendo or Sony, so if you were hoping for the house of Persona to go first party, well…sorry about that (but I did warn you that it wasn’t going to happen).
If you were hoping for the critically acclaimed developer to stay third party and independent from any specific platforms like I did, it’s time to celebrate, maybe with just a shadow of concern due to the fact that Sega doesn’t exactly have an excellent track record for localizing its niche titles. We can only hope that Atlus and especially Atlus USA will influence Sega on that front, instead of the other way around.