|Born||July 17, 1944|
|Occupation||Executive Chairman of Global Education Learning|
|Known for||Sega of America, Inc.|
Thomas "Tom" Kalinske (born July 17, 1944) is an American businessman, best known as having worked for Mattel 1972-87, reviving the Barbie & Hot Wheels Brands, launching Masters of the Universe, then being promoted to CEO of Mattel from 1985 to 1987. Next he was CEO of Matchbox, and then was recruited to be the president and CEO of Sega of America, Inc. from 1990 to 1996, and the CEO and COB of Leapfrog 1997-2006. His aggressive marketing decisions during his time at Sega, such as price drops, anti-Nintendo attack ads, and the famous "Sega Scream" TV campaign, are often cited as key elements in the success of the Genesis video game console. He is currently the Executive Chairman of Global Education Learning, a company dedicated to children's education in China.
Kalinske's education includes a bachelor of science degree at the University of Wisconsin in 1966, an MBA at the University of Arizona in 1968, and attending the Strategic Management Harvard Business School in 1976.
Previously, Kalinske was CEO and Chairman of educational toy company, Leapfrog, which grew to over $600M in revenue becoming the largest education toy company in the US. He was President of Knowledge Universe, a company that Mike Milken and Larry Ellison each invested $250 million into for the purpose of using technology to improve education. According to Oregon Business magazine in 2011, the company was "the largest single private provider of early childhood education services in the country", with 40,000 employees on three continents and the biggest market share in the United Kingdom, Malaysia and Singapore.Many education companies came out of Knowledge Universe, including LeapFrog (NYSE:LF), K-12 (NASDAQ:LRN), Knowledge Beginnings (the largest chain of preschools in the US), Spring Plc, and Vistage (Executive Education).
While Kalinske was CEO of Sega of America the company grew from $72 million to more than $1.5 billion and the market value of Sega grew from less than $2 billion to more than $5 billion.[ citation needed ] His market strategies have been cited as the key factor in breaking Nintendo's dominance of the video game industry. The Genesis and Game Gear systems were highly successful during this time. Later the commercial failure of the Sega Saturn video game console in the US was exacerbated by Sega's announcement during E3 1995 that the system was available in selected stores effective immediately instead of on the planned date of September 2, 1995, which had been dubbed “Saturnday”. Kalinske was generally completely against releasing the Saturn early, but was forced to do so by Sega Enterprises, Ltd. With few games and consoles in stock, the pre-selected retailers simply weren’t ready to begin distributing the machine, and those left out of the loop were so offended by this move that they refused to distribute the Saturn at all.
Kalinske was not a fan of the Saturn's architecture, and was later quoted saying that he believed no one would be able to successfully market the console. 549 to take effect on September 30, Isao Okawa, who owned Sega at the time via CSK, reached out to him and invited him to work with the Okawa Foundation. Kalinske remained on Sega's board of directors following his resignation.After having tendered his resignation from Sega on July 15, 1996, :
On July 11, 2006, Kalinske gave an exclusive interview to Sega-16 via an hour long telephone conversation, reflecting back on his Sega days.Tom is quoted several times in IGN's 2009 article "IGN Presents the History of SEGA", and extensively in interview excerpts in The Ultimate History of Video Games by Steven Kent.
Kalinske served on the board of directors of the Toy Manufacturers of America for twelve years. [ citation needed ]He served on the Board of Blackboard 2005-2012. He currently serves on the Board of Cambium Learning Group, the Board of Genyous (a cancer drug development company), and the Board of WCEPS (Wisconsin Center for Educational Products & Services). He is Emeritus Advisor to both the UW Business School and University of Arizona Eller School of Management, and is Vice Chairman of LeapFrog Inc.
Blake J. Harris's book Console Wars , released in May 2014, is a retelling of Tom Kalinske's efforts to overthrow Nintendo. The story is formulated in a third person narrative which was assembled based on more than two hundred interviews carried out by the author with former Sega and Nintendo employees. A documentary from the book's author is in production, originally the book was supposed to be adapted by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg as a feature film, however it will instead be adapted as a limited television series with Rogen and Goldberg still attached.
For his work at Mattel, Universal Matchbox, Sega, and Leapfrog, Kalinske was a 1997 inductee into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame. [ citation needed ]He has received the NYC Boy Scout's Good Scout Award, the Starlight Foundation Man of Year Award, the University of Wisconsin Business Partners "Distinguished Fellow" Award, and the Video Software Dealers Man of Year Award.
The Nintendo 64 (officially abbreviated as N64, model number: NUS, stylized as NINTENDO64) is a home video game console developed and marketed by Nintendo. Named for its 64-bit central processing unit, it was released in June 1996 in Japan, September 1996 in North America, and March 1997 in Europe and Australia. It was the last major home console to use the cartridge as its primary storage format until the Nintendo Switch in 2017. The Nintendo 64 was discontinued in early-mid 2002 following the launch of its successor, the GameCube, in 2001.
The PlayStation is a home video game console developed and marketed by Sony Computer Entertainment. It was first released on 3 December 1994 in Japan, on 9 September 1995 in North America, on 29 September 1995 in Europe, and on 15 November 1995 in Australia, and was the first of the PlayStation lineup of video game consoles. As a fifth generation console, the PlayStation primarily competed with the Nintendo 64 and the Sega Saturn.
The 32X is an add-on for the Sega Genesis video game console. Codenamed "Project Mars", the 32X was designed to expand the power of the Genesis and serve as a transitional console into the 32-bit era until the release of the Sega Saturn. Independent of the Genesis, the 32X uses its own ROM cartridges and has its own library of games. The add-on was distributed under the name Super 32X in Japan, Genesis 32X in North America, Mega Drive 32X in the PAL region, and Mega 32X in Brazil.
The Sega VR is a virtual reality headset developed by Sega in the early 1990s. Versions were planned for arcades and consoles, but only the arcade version was released, and the home console versions were cancelled.
The Sega Saturn is a 32-bit fifth-generation home video game console developed by Sega and released on November 22, 1994 in Japan, May 11, 1995 in North America, and July 8, 1995 in Europe. The successor to the successful Sega Genesis, the Saturn has a dual-CPU architecture and eight processors. Its games are in CD-ROM format, and its game library contains several arcade ports as well as original games.
The Dreamcast is a home video game console released by Sega on November 27, 1998 in Japan, September 9, 1999 in North America, and October 14, 1999 in Europe. It was the first in the sixth generation of video game consoles, preceding Sony's PlayStation 2, Nintendo's GameCube and Microsoft's Xbox. The Dreamcast was Sega's final home console, marking the end of the company's 18 years in the console market.
A video game console is a computer device that outputs a video signal or visual image to display a video game that one or more people can play.
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The fifth-generation era refers to computer and video games, video game consoles, and handheld gaming consoles dating from approximately October 4, 1993 to March 23, 2006. For home consoles, the best-selling console was the PlayStation (PS), followed by the Nintendo 64 (N64), and then the Sega Saturn. The PlayStation also had a redesigned version, the PSOne, which was launched on July 7, 2000.
LeapFrog Enterprises Inc is an educational entertainment and electronics company based in Emeryville, California. LeapFrog designs, develops, and markets technology-based learning products and related content for the education of children from infancy through grade school. The company was founded by Michael Wood and Robert Lally in 1994. John Barbour is the chief executive officer of LeapFrog.
1996 has seen many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Blazing Heroes, Super Mario 64, NiGHTS into Dreams..., Crash Bandicoot, Resident Evil, Dead or Alive, Duke Nukem 3D and Tomb Raider.
1995 has seen many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Mario's Picross, Chrono Trigger, Mega Man 7, Rayman, Twisted Metal, Star Wars: Dark Forces, Destruction Derby and Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island.
The Sega Genesis, known as the Mega Drive outside North America, is a 16-bit home video game console developed and sold by Sega. The Genesis is Sega's third console and the successor to the Master System. Sega released it as the Mega Drive in Japan in 1988, and later as the Genesis in North America in 1989. In 1990, it was distributed as the Mega Drive by Virgin Mastertronic in Europe, Ozisoft in Australasia, and Tec Toy in Brazil. In South Korea, it was distributed by Samsung as the Super Gam*Boy and later the Super Aladdin Boy.
Hayao Nakayama is a Japanese businessman and was the former President and CEO of Sega Enterprises, Ltd from 1983 to 1999.
A home video game console, or simply home console, is a video game device that is primarily used for home gamers, as opposed to in arcades or some other commercial establishment. Home consoles are one type of video game consoles, in contrast to the handheld game consoles which are smaller and portable, allowing people to carry them and play them at any time or place, along with microconsoles and dedicated consoles.
Sega Games Co., Ltd. is a Japanese multinational video game developer and publisher headquartered in Shinagawa, Tokyo. Its international branches, Sega of America and Sega Europe, are respectively headquartered in Irvine, California, and London. Sega's arcade division, once part of Sega Corporation, has existed as Sega Interactive Co., Ltd. since 2015. Both companies are subsidiaries of Sega Holdings Co., Ltd., which is in turn a part of Sega Sammy Holdings. From 1983 until 2001, Sega also developed and sold video game consoles.
Console Wars: Sega, Nintendo, and the Battle That Defined a Generation is a 2014 non-fiction novel written by Blake J. Harris. It follows businessman Tom Kalinske in his venture as CEO of video game company Sega of America, and details the history of the fierce business competition between Sega and Nintendo throughout the 1990s as well as the internal conflicts that took place between Sega of America and Sega of Japan. Harris wrote the book in the style of a novel by compiling several interviews with people who were involved with the events, using the information gathered to create a dramatic interpretation of the events. A film adaptation of the book directed by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg was announced in February 2014, which has since transitioned to a limited television series.
The Electronic Entertainment Expo 1995, commonly known as E3 1995, was the first Electronic Entertainment Expo held. The event took place at the Los Angeles Convention Center from May 11–13, 1995, with 50,000 total attendees. Highlights of the 1995 show include Sony's announcement of the PlayStation's release date and pricing, Sega's surprise launch of the Sega Saturn, and Nintendo's showcase of the Virtual Boy console.
The history of Sega, a Japanese multinational video game developer and publisher, has roots back to Standard Games in 1940 and Service Games of Japan in the 1950s. The formation of the company known today as Sega is traced back to the founding of Nihon Goraku Bussan, which became known as Sega Enterprises, Ltd. following acquisition of Rosen Enterprises in 1965. Originally an importer of coin-operated games to Japan and manufacturer of slot machines and jukeboxes, Sega began developing its own arcade games in 1966 with Periscope, which became a surprise success and led to more arcade machine development. In 1969 Gulf and Western Industries bought Sega, which continued its arcade game business through the 1970s.
Blake J. Harris is an American author, journalist and podcaster known for his coverage of historical topics in video games and virtual reality based in New York City, NY.
His job was to try and beat Nintendo. ... And he did it by getting in first, being ultra competitive on price, offering upgrade paths, dragging videogaming (kicking and screaming) through the doors of some cool ad agencies and introducing the world to Sonic the Hedgehog. ... under Kalinske, Sega proved that the gaming market ain't a one-horse town.