|Founded||July 5, 1950|
|Headquarters||Taitō, Tokyo, Japan|
|¥21.7 billion (2019)|
|¥242.8 billion (2019)|
Number of employees
|810 (August 2018)|
|Parent||Bandai Namco Holdings|
"Bandai Namco Group Integrated Report 2019". Bandai Namco Holdings. September 13, 2019. Archived from the original on May 17, 2020. Retrieved May 17, 2020. "About Company". Bandai. Archived from the original on January 30, 2019. Retrieved April 21, 2020.
Bandai Co., Ltd.is a Japanese toy maker and a producer of many plastic model kits as well as a former video game company. Its headquarters are located in Taitō, Tokyo. From 1981 until 2001, Bandai also produced video game consoles.
In 1947, Naoharu Yamashina began working for a Kanazawa-based textile wholesaler.The eldest son to a rice retailer, Yamashina had studied business in high school and was enlisted in World War II, where an impact from a grenade shrapnel blinded him in his right eye. The textile business, run by his wife's brother, was struggling financially as a result of Japan's post-war economy. He made little money working, and as he was having a difficult time finding ways to allow the business to pick up, a neighbor told him about the potential of the toy industry and the financial success that could be generated from it. Intrigued, Yamashina convinced his wife to travel to Tokyo with him to begin studying the potentially lucrative market for toys. The two had little money or exposure in the field, working long hours to establish a small toy distribution division within the textile business.
Yamashina assumed full control of the toy division on 5 July 1950, when it was spun-off as a separate company named Bandai-ya in Taitō, Tokyo. The name was derived from Japanese reading of Chinese phrase "bandai fueki" (万代不易), meaning "eternally unchanging" or "things that are eternal." Being assisted by Atsuko Tatsumi, publisher of the Weekly Toy News in Tokyo, Bandai-ya distributed and imported celluloid dolls, metallic toys, and rubber swimming rings. The company released its first original product the same year, the Rhythm Ball, a beach ball with a bell inside that suffered from numerous quality defects. Bandai-ya improved the quality of its products as it continued designing new kinds of toys, such as inexpensive metal cars and aircraft models. Several of these were exported to the United States and elsewhere as a result of their popularity, being among the earliest "Made In Japan" products exported outside the country.
As its revenue increased, Bandai-ya began expanding its operations.A new shipping and warehouse facility was constructed in spring 1953, followed by research and development (R&D) and product inspection departments later that year. A manufacturing facility, Waraku Works, was opened in early 1955 to increase the production of toys. In the same year, it implemented the toy industry's first quality assurance system; the first toy approved by this was the 1956 Toyopet Crown model car, which was also Bandai-ya's first product with a guarantee. The growing company worked on creating a friendly corporate image for itself, introducing a new logo, slogan, and television commercials that emphasized its quality products. Bandai-ya was renamed Bandai in July 1961, the same time it started spreading its operations overseas, beginning with the establishment of Bandai Overseas Supply in New York City.
While its toys often sold well in Japan, Bandai didn't achieve considerable success until 1963, when it began producing action figures based on the anime Astro Boy .The toy line's success prompted Bandai to reorganize and rethink its business strategies, as the company transitioned from working on original products to funding the creation of new television series and acting as a sponsor during their run, with advertisements that showed off Bandai's tie-in action figures and costumes. A similar blockbuster hit was found with action figures in the likenesses of Ultraman characters, largely due to the popularity of the television series at the time; the figures were later released in North America to little fanfare. In July 1966, it released Crazy Foam, a line of bubble-blowing canisters that sold 2.4 million units in three months, thanks to the backing of an extensive marketing campaign. Bandai's other products included the Thunderbird electrical vehicles, the Water Motor bath toys, and the Naughty Flipper, the last of which received a gold medal at the 1968 New York International Innovative productions Exhibition.
Bandai continued to expand in the 1970s with the creation of several subsidiaries; Tonka Japan in 1970 following a joint venture with Tonka,Bandai Models being established in 1971, and finally Popy, who specialized in the manufacturing of toy characters. Although not their most profitable range, Bandai's 1/48 scale AFV models dominated that segment of the model kit market. Bandai America Inc. was established as local US sales/marketing operation in 1978. Spacewarp, a line of build-it-yourself toy rolling ball "roller coasters" was introduced by Bandai in the 1980s.
In May 1980, Makoto Yamashina, son of the founder, became president of Bandai. Naoharu Yamashina became chairman of the board. Upon his arrival, Makoto Yamashina completely changed the aging staff of Bandai and replaced it with young employees with the intent of not only bringing new ideas but also revisiting the strategy of the group. The new president took a different commercial approach by selling directly to retailers rather than going through intermediates.
In July 1980, Bandai launched the Gundam Plastic Model based on the animated series which gave birth to the Gunpla series.In November, the subsidiary Celent was created.
Bandai became one of the first third-party developers for the Nintendo Family Computer in 1985.Among its first titles was Tag Team Match: MUSCLE , a video game adaptation of the Kinnikuman manga, which sold over one million copies. Bandai also produced the Family Trainer Pad, released outside Japan as the Power Pad, which also performed well commercially. A series of games was released both in the US and in Japan, including Athletic World and Stadium Events for the NES. Shortly after its release, Nintendo purchased the rights to the FFF mat in North America, replacing it with their own redesign, the Power Pad. In order to maintain branding continuity, Stadium Events was pulled from shelves after a short period of availability at Woolworth's stores. Because the game was pulled from shelves and discontinued before many copies were sold, Bandai's Stadium Events is universally accepted as the rarest licensed NES game released in North America. A shrink wrapped copy of the game sold for $41,270 on eBay in February 2010. The sister game to Stadium Events, called Athletic World was initially released with a label that indicated compatibility with the Family Fun Fitness mat, but was later re-released with an updated label that mentions the Power Pad instead. Stadium Events was not released by name again, but instead was slightly modified and relaunched as the Power Pad pack-in game, World Class Track Meet .
Since the 1980s, Bandai has become the leading toy company of Japan, and to this day, has the main toy licenses in Japan to popular properties including Daikaiju , Ultraman , Super Robot , Kamen Rider , the Super Sentai and Power Rangers series (which it took part in creating), Gundam , and many others. In February 1989, it acquired arcade game developer Coreland and reorganized it into Banpresto, which became Bandai's coin-operated entertainment division.In the early 1990s, Bandai published games for Nintendo in the United Kingdom, including Street Fighter II on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System.
In January 1997, Bandai announced it would merge its operations with Japanese video game developer Sega. ¥9 billion loss from Bandai the same month, attributed to declining game sales and the poor reception of the Apple Pippin console. Bandai felt Sega was an appropriate company to merge with, as it possessed an American-esc management and several international offices, in addition to owning several successful franchises like Sonic the Hedgehog . Opposition arose within Bandai's employees and midlevel executives, as neither felt the company's family-friendly work ethic clashed well with Sega's top-down corporate culture. As a result, Bandai called off the merge in May before its finalization in October. President Makoto Yamashina took responsibility for its failure, publicly apologizing and resigning his position within the company. Bandai instead agreed to a business alliance with Sega.The merge, a $1 billion stock swap where Sega would acquire Bandai and dissolve the company, would have established a new entertainment conglomerate named Sega Bandai Ltd. with an estimated $6 billion in revenue. The announcement followed a
After its merger with game developer and amusement facility operator Namco in 2005, Bandai Company is now under the management and a member of Bandai Namco Holdings (Bandai Namco Group). Following a group reorganisation in 2006, Bandai heads the group's Toys and Hobby Strategic Business Unit (SBU).Bandai Entertainment announced it would cease its distribution operations in January 2012. Beez Entertainment is no longer releasing new anime in Europe.
In February 2018, Saban Brands and Bandai's US division jointly announced a mutual agreement to not renew their Power Rangers master toy license, effective Spring 2019, after which competing toy company Hasbro will inherit the license. This transition will not affect Bandai Japan's Super Sentai master toy license with Toei.
A sister company, Bandai Spirits, was established on 15 February 2018. On 1 April 2018, the division of Bandai Co., Ltd that dealt with products for adult customers (including figures and plastic models) as well as Banpresto's prizes business were transferred over to Bandai Spirits.
Bandai's headquarters is in Taitō, Tokyo, Japan. The company owns offices in the United States (Bandai America), in Mexico (Bandai Corporacion Mexico), in the United Kingdom (Bandai UK), and in France, Spain, Taiwan, and mainland China. In the past, it owned offices in Hong Kong, South Korea, Thailand, Germany, and East Asia, which acted as distributors for Bandai products in their respective countries. Bandai is a wholly owned subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings and heads its parent's Toy and Hobby Content Strategic Business Unit (CSBU).
Bandai is among the largest and most profitable toy companies worldwide, alongside Mattel and Hasbro. The company focuses on creating unique and innovative products for its consumers, and to bend established conventions within the industry; its slogan, "Break out of the box" was made in reference to this.
Bandai Spirits Co., Ltd. produces figurines and plastic models targeted towards older demographics, utilizing popular licenses such as Mobile Suit Gundam , One Piece , Pokémon , Kirby , Hatsune Miku , Demon Slayer , Ultraman , and My Hero Academia . Bandai produces confectioneries, board games, and capsule toys through its subsidiary MegaHouse Corporation, which also releases toys and figurines under its MegaToy label. MegaHouse also holds the license for the Rubik's Cube in Japan, and has created multiple variations of the toy specifically for Japanese audiences. Manga series, television shows, and character-themed products are created by the Plex subsidiary. [ citation needed ]Bandai Namco Collectables LLC, a division of Bandai America, imports and distributes Bandai-produced collectible figures across the United States. Products are often distributed through Bandai Logipal Inc. and Logipal Express Inc., divisions that also provide product inspection and manufacturing support, customs brokerage, and services relating to amusement facilities.
Gundam is a Japanese military science fiction media franchise/media mix. Created by Yoshiyuki Tomino and Sunrise, the franchise features giant robots, or mecha, with the name "Gundam". The franchise began on April 7, 1979 with Mobile Suit Gundam, a TV series that defined the "real robot" mecha anime genre by featuring giant robots called mobile suits in a militaristic setting. The popularity of the series and its merchandise spawned a franchise that includes 50 TV series, films and OVAs as well as manga, novels and video games, along with a whole industry of plastic model kits known as Gunpla which makes up 90 percent of the Japanese character plastic-model market.
The WonderSwan is a handheld game console released in Japan by Bandai. It was developed by Gunpei Yokoi's company Koto Laboratory and Bandai, and was the last piece of hardware Yokoi developed before his death in 1997. Released in 1999 in the fifth generation of video game consoles, the WonderSwan and its two later models, the WonderSwan Color and SwanCrystal were officially supported until being discontinued by Bandai in 2003. During its lifespan, no variation of the WonderSwan was released outside of Japan.
Namco Limited was a Japanese multinational video game developer and publisher headquartered in Ōta, Tokyo. It held several international branches, including Namco America in Santa Clara, California, Namco Europe in London, Namco Taiwan in Kaohsiung, and Shanghai Namco in mainland China.
Monolith Software Inc., trading as Monolith Soft, is a Japanese video game development studio originally owned by Namco until being bought out by Nintendo in 2007. The company was founded in 1999 by Tetsuya Takahashi with the support and cooperation of Masaya Nakamura, the founder of Namco. Their first project was the Xenosaga series, a spiritual successor to the Square-developed Xenogears. Multiple Square staff would join Takahashi at Monolith Soft including Hirohide Sugiura and Yasuyuki Honne.
Bandai Visual Co., Ltd. was a Japanese anime, film production, and distribution enterprise, established by Bandai and a subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings. They focused mainly in international distribution of anime properties in North America.
Super Robot Wars is a series of tactical role-playing video games produced by Bandai Namco Entertainment, formerly Banpresto. Starting out as a spinoff of the Compati Hero series, the main feature of the franchise is having a story that crosses over several popular mecha anime, manga and video games, allowing characters and mecha from different titles to team up or battle one another. The first game in the franchise was released for the Game Boy on April 20, 1991. Later spawning numerous games that were released on various consoles and handhelds. Due to the nature of crossover games and licensing involved, only a few games have been released outside Japan, and in English. The franchise celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2016, and its 30th anniversary in 2021.
Banpresto Co., Ltd. was a Japanese toy company, and a former game developer and publisher, headquartered in the Shinagawa Seaside West Building in Shinagawa, Tokyo. The current iteration of the company was formed on April 1, 2008, with the focus on the toy consumer business. The company was dissolved in February 2019 and combined to Bandai Spirits, with the company getting all the rights and duties of Banpresto.
Bandai Namco Holdings Inc., also known as the Bandai Namco Group and generally Bandai Namco, is a Japanese holding company headquartered in Minato, Tokyo, formed from the merger of Bandai and Namco on September 29, 2005. The company specializes in toys, video games, arcades, anime, and amusement parks. Bandai Namco also supply various arcade machines to movie theaters and arcades across the globe. As of March 2021, it is the third largest video game holding companies in Japan in terms of revenue and market capitalization, after Sony Interactive Entertainment and Nintendo, ahead of Sega Sammy Holdings, Konami, and Square Enix.
Namco Bandai Partners S.A.S. was an amalgamation of several former Atari SA offices located in PAL territories, which were acquired beginning in 2009 by Bandai Namco Holdings. The acquisitions came on the heels of Atari's financial difficulties, which had begun to snowball in 2006. Atari and Namco had long maintained a cross-publishing relationship that can be traced back to the very origins of Namco, and Atari's liquidation of regional assets was a natural opportunity for Namco Bandai to gain a PAL distribution network. Namco Bandai Partners merged with Namco Bandai Games Europe in 2013 in order to unify Namco Bandai's publishing and distribution operations.
Bandai Namco Entertainment Inc. is a Japanese multinational video game publisher headquartered in Minato-ku, Tokyo. Its international branches, Bandai Namco Entertainment America and Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe, are respectively headquartered in Santa Clara, California and Lyon, France. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings, an entertainment conglomerate.
Masaya Nakamura was a Japanese businessman and the founder of Namco. He was the company's president up until 2002, where he took a ceremonial role in its management. Following the formation of Bandai Namco Holdings, Nakamura would retain an honorary position in the video game division, Bandai Namco Entertainment.
Hayao Nakayama is a Japanese businessman and was the former President and CEO of Sega Enterprises, Ltd from 1983 to 1999.
Project X Zone is a crossover tactical role-playing game for the Nintendo 3DS developed by Monolith Soft with assistance from Capcom and Red Entertainment and published by Namco Bandai Games. The game is a follow up to the 2005 video game Namco × Capcom and features characters from Namco Bandai, Capcom, and Sega. The game was released on October 11, 2012 in Japan; June 25, 2013 in North America; and July 5, 2013 in Europe. The game received mixed to positive reviews on release; praise went towards the game's cast, combat system, and presentation, but criticism was directed at its repetitive gameplay and confusing storyline.
Daisuki was a Japanese website focused on streaming anime content, which was founded in 2013 by Asatsu-DK and six production companies: Toei Animation, Aniplex, Sunrise, TMS Entertainment, Nihon Ad Systems, and Dentsu. Daisuki was managed by Anime Consortium Japan, an anime content joint venture financed by Asatsu-DK, Bandai Namco, the Cool Japan Fund, and several animation studios, and which is currently managed by Bandai Namco.
The giant robot anime franchise Gundam is a popular culture icon in Japan. The Gundam franchise had grossed over $5 billion in retail sales by 2000. Its owner Bandai Namco Holdings was earning up to ¥54.5 billion per year from products based on the Gundam characters by 2007, rising to ¥80.2 billion per year by 2014.
Bandai Namco Studios Inc. is a Japanese video game developer headquartered in Kōtō, Tokyo. Its offices in Malaysia and Singapore, Bandai Namco Studio Malaysia and Bandai Namco Studios Singapore, are based out of Infinite Studios, Singapore and Selangor, Malaysia respectively. Bandai Namco Studios is a subsidiary of Bandai Namco Entertainment, which itself is a subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings. The company works under its parent company as a keiretsu; Bandai Namco Studios creates video games for home consoles, handheld systems, mobile devices and arcade hardware, while Bandai Namco Entertainment handles the managing, marketing and publishing of these products.
B.B. Studio Co., Ltd. is a Japanese video game development company. The company in its current form is a result of a merger between BEC and Banpresoft by their parent company, Bandai Namco Entertainment.
Namcot Collection is a 2020 video game compilation published by Bandai Namco Entertainment. Originally released in Japan for the Nintendo Switch, it was later localized for international territories as two separate collections, Namco Museum Archives Vol. 1 and Vol. 2, for the Switch, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Windows. Namcot Collection includes a wide array of video games published by Namco for the Family Computer and Nintendo Entertainment System, with save states, achievements, and homebrew ports of Pac-Man Championship Edition and Gaplus.
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