According to Chinese media outlet ifeng, insiders said that Tencent had recently acquired about 90% of Wake Up Interactive’s shares, a Japanese game studio. The purchase may have happened in September and might be worth more than 5 billion yen ($44 million). Neither company has responded about the news yet.
Wake Up Interactive is the parent company of Tokyo-based Soleil, which developed the game Ninjala for the Nintendo Switch and helped produce the game Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes.
Soleil is famous for developing high-quality action games. To date, the company has developed a series of masterpieces for consoles, PCs and smart phones. This is one of the reasons why Tencent approached Wake Up Interactive, the parent company of Soleil.
Analysts said that the near-total acquisition of Wake Up Interactive is also extraordinary for a company such as Tencent. Previously, Tencent had made only small investments in the Japanese market, the main purpose being to ensure the international copyright of games in the future.
In the past two years, however, Tencent and NetEase have actively recruited prospects in Japan, hoping to gain valuable intellectual property rights in the animation and video game fields, while reducing their own dependence on domestic businesses.
Kadokawa, a Japanese publishing giant, said last month that Tencent plans to spend about 30 billion yen ($263.2 million) to acquire its 6.86% stake. What’s more, Grasshopper Manufacturing, a Japanese game developer, became a subsidiary of NetEase. Grasshopper Manufacturing was founded in 1998, and its flagship games include Killer7 and No More Heroes.