SoftBank To Acquire GungHo Online Entertainment


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.


Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and wrote the book "The Legend of Zelda - A Complete Development History". He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.