After 50 years, Sega arcades are officially on the verge of disappearing from Japan

After more than 50 years, Sega’s brand image is about to disappear from Japanese arcades, it has been announced.

Sega Sammy announced on Friday that it will sell the remaining 14.9% of its Sega Entertainment division, which operates its game centers across Japan, to rental company Genda Inc.

Genda first bought 85.1% of Sega Entertainment shares in 2020. At the time, Sega Sammy cited uncertainty around the pandemic as the reason he decided to sell.

The impact of the pandemic also led to the closure of Sega’s famous Akihabara arcade in September 2020.

After the sale, Sega Entertainment will be fully renamed Genda GiGO Entertainment, this has been confirmed, and all Sega Game Centers nationwide will have their Sega brand changed to “GiGO”.

Sega opened the first of its Japanese game centers in the late 1960s, including Joypolis amusement parks and Club Sega arcades. It is estimated that the company had just under 1,000 arcade locations in Japan at its peak in the late 90s.

Commenting on the news, Genda GiGO President Hisashi Kataoka said, “Sega stores across the country will be changing their store names to GiGO, to express our gratitude for Sega’s 56-year history and our desire to to be an oasis that quenches people’s thirst for real. entertainment.

“We will start with Ikebukuro, Akihabara and Shinjuku. Then to the whole country.

After 50 years, Sega arcades are officially on the verge of disappearing from Japan
Sega arcades will officially disappear from Japan

It should be noted that while Sega’s entertainment business has run its arcade slots, the company has manufactured and sold arcade machines themselves separately and will likely continue to do so.

Sega is known for some of the world’s most iconic arcade games including OutRun, Virtua Fighter, Daytona USA and many more.

Arcades in Japan were reportedly on a downward trend even before the pandemic. According to a police white paper, in 2019 there were only 4,022 arcades across Japan, down from 26,573 in 1986.

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