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Game Maker Oizumi Acquires Anime Studio AIC

posted on by Egan Loo
Studio behind Strike Witches 2, Amagami SS, Tenchi Muyo! to become subsidiary

The pachisuro (pachinko-parlor slot machine) maker Oizumi has announced on Monday that it has acquired the studio Anime International Company (AIC). Oizumi has decided to make AIC into its wholly owned subsidiary. As of September 30, Oizumi is acquiring 3,800 shares or 95% of AIC for 530 million yen (about US$6.3 million) from the ACA-managed investment fund MCP SYNERGY. The remaning 200 shares or 5% of AIC is owned by the TM Company, and AIC will buy back those shares on that same day.

Tōru Miura established the studio that would become AIC on July 15, 1982, and he is its current head. AIC has a number of sub-studios within itself: AIC Digital, AIC Spirits, AIC ASTA, AIC PLUS+, and AIC Takarazuka.

AIC has been working on Strike Witches 2 and Amagami SS recently, and its anime adaptation of Tsukasa Fushimi's Ore no Imōto ga Konnani Kawaii Wake ga Nai (Oreimo) light novel series will premiere on October 3. AIC worked on dozens of anime in the past, including Megazone 23, Gall Force, Bubblegum Crisis, Vampire Princess Miyu, Tenchi Muyo!, Aa! Megamisama!, Armitage III, El Hazard, Seto no Hanayome, Bamboo Blade, and Sora no Otoshimono.

Oiziumi has adapted Higurashi no Naku Koro ni into a pachisuro machine this year, and it collaborated with manga/anime creator Leiji Matsumoto on a Queen Galaxia pachisuro machine last year.

In the fiscal year that ended in June of 2010, AIC reported 1.915 billion yen (US$22.74 million) in sales and 28 million yen (US$330,000) in net profit. In the fiscal year that ended in March of 2010, Oizumi reported 6.951 billion yen (US$82.54 million) in sales and 156 million yen (US$1.85 million) in net profit.

The financial research firm Teikoku Databank reported that overall revenues for Japanese animation production companies were down for a second year in a row in 2009. However most of the companies that reported to Teikoku Databank that they did work for the pachinko (Japanese-style upright pinball machine) industry reported an increase in revenues. Since 2005, Sega Sammy Holdings, the parent company of the game makers Sega and Sammy, has owned just over half of the anime production company TMS Entertainment (Detective Conan, Lupin III, Soreike! Anpanman).

Sources: ITmedia News, animeanime.biz

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