SoftBank To Acquire GungHo Online Entertainment

By Ishaan . March 25, 2013 . 3:00pm

Japanese telecommunications firm SoftBank is going to increase its stake in GungHo Online Entertainment, the company has announced.


SoftBank plan to spend 25 billion yen ($265 million) to acquire GungHo shares from a company named Asian Groove, which is run by Taizo Son, who is the chairman at GungHo. Son is also the brother of Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son.


SoftBank plan to increase their stake in GungHo in April this year, after GungHo conduct a 10-for-1 share split. After the deal, GungHo will become a Softbank subsidiary, with 58.5% of their shares owned by SoftBank.


SoftBank have their eyes on Gung Ho for their success in the mobile space. However, aside from operating the immensely popular Puzzle & Dragons freemium game, GungHo Online Entertainment also owns studios like Grasshopper Manufacture—whom they recently acquired—along with other studios like Acquire, developers of the Tenchu and Shinobido games. And yes, they also own Gravity Co., developers of Ragnarok Online.


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  • DanijoEX

    Still that’s a good thing, right? I wonder things will go from there?

  • Solomon_Kano

    It’s so cool to me that the company’s jumping from one brother to the other (mad rhymez, yo). That’s pretty funny.

    • Maybe they’re twins like Tomax and Xamot, and SoftBank is secretly run by Cobra. :P

      • Solomon_Kano

        Ha! Who’ll be the Joes?

        • Maybe GREE? GREE-I-JOE!

          • Solomon_Kano

            Pffft! That’s perfect!

          • LynxAmali

            Fund it.

  • I can imagine everyone sitting around giving each other pats on the back about how their world domination plans are coming along. j/k (or am I?) I was like “what da what?” when I saw the title and read that the company getting Gung Ho is run by that Chairman’s brother. At least you know that they’re trying to look out for each other while warming up the money printers.

  • Wow. Isn’t Softbank also in talks to buy Sprint?

    • Suicunesol

      According to the wiki page, yes. 70% of Sprint apparently? The deal should be completed this year.

      • Whoa o.o! I knew I saw something in the news about it. Thank you for the quick answer :D

  • almostautumn

    Does this mean they own Grasshopper also?

    • Solomon_Kano

      They’re part of GungHo, so yep.

  • puchinri

    That felt kind of worrisome, but then it was like, “hey, bro, I’m gonna buy your company?”

    “Yeah? That’s cool.”

    Unless there’s some sibling rivalry or something, which would seem funny, but not be. But yeah, this situation just seems amusing.

  • Armane

    Wait, Acquire got acquired? This is surprisingly relevant to my interests, but not all that surprising. Regardless, I hope this doesn’t impact future games.

    • It happened in 2011. :P

  • Sylveria

    Oh I don’t like this at all.

  • landlock

    I’d like to be hopeful but doesn’t really seem like good news.

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    O.o this is kinda funny lol. Japanese game company is bought by Korean game company and now the reverse happen again where Japanese company bought a Korean company lol.

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