Former Sony Computer Entertainment Korea Boss Shiro Kawauchi is known for a few exploits, like dying repeatedly during Bloodborne livestreams or getting moved to tears during the local PS4 launch event. Even due to that, he’s loved among Korean fans pretty much like Shuhei Yoshida is appreciated by international PlayStation gamers.
Recently, the good job he did in the past five years in Korea, netted him a promotion, and he has just been named Vice President of Software Business back in Japan, responsible of first, second and third party game business for the whole Japanese and Asia region.
In a recent interview on Game Watch he provided more color on his new role, mentioning that he was the one that signed the second party deal with Activision through which Call of Duty: Black Ops III for PS4 was published directly by Sony in Japan. Similarily, while games by Square Enix are third party in Japan (and in the west), they’re published by Sony in the rest of Asia, and considered second party there as a consequence.
According to Kawauchi-san, this kind of second party deal is great for both Sony and publishers, and he wants to sign more of them in the future. He explained that as a platform holder, Sony can provide the infrastructure to publishers and developers, and they can also take care of the marketing with their staff localized in every country.
Even going at events like G-Star (that was held recently in Pusan, Korea) might be impossible for some companies on their own, but Sony can bring second party games to those events, providing promotion on a local level.
This is quite interesting, considering that even on a worldwide level Sony has been trying to position big franchises like Call of Duty and Destiny (that was also published directly by Sony in Japan) under the umbrella of its brand, even if it didn’t go as far as striking second party deals just yet.