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Logo of The Pokémon Company

The Pokémon Company (株式会社ポケモン Kabushiki gaisha Pokémon) is a company responsible for the licensing and marketing of the Pokémon franchise. Founded on April 23, 1998 with the name The Pokémon Center Company (ポケモンセンター株式会社 Pokémon Center kabushiki gaisha) as a joint venture by Nintendo, Game Freak, and Creatures, it was created to manage the Pokémon Center stores in Japan[1]. It has since expanded to be responsible for the game software, card games, license management, TV animation and films, and other ancillary businesses in Japan and Asia[2]. Its wholly owned subsidiaries, Pokémon Korea, Inc. and The Pokémon Company International, manage these responsibilities in South Korea and areas outside Asia, respectively[3][4].

As of September 2019, The Pokémon Company had sold over 346 million units of their video games and shipped over 28.8 billion trading cards[5]. Tsunekazu Ishihara is President and CEO.

Contents

History

Logo used for activities in Asian countries (other than Japan and South Korea) since 2017

The Pokémon Center Co., Ltd. was founded on April 23, 1998 as a joint venture between Nintendo Co., Ltd., Game Freak, Inc. and Creatures, Inc. (the three companies that jointly own the copyright to Pokémon in Japan) to manage the Pokémon Center stores that were beginning to open[1].

By 2000, the overwhelmingly positive response to Pokémon Gold and Silver meant that Tsunekazu Ishihara of Creatures began being inundated with requests to license the Pokémon brand from companies across the globe. This, along with a desire to establish long-term goals for the franchise, meant that a single company would be needed to steward the brand, and manage key areas[6]. It was decided in October 2000, with the help of Satoru Iwata who had newly joined Nintendo from HAL Laboratory, Inc., to transform The Pokémon Center Company into The Pokémon Company to first take responsibility for video games, and in December of that year to begin its licencing business[1]. Since 2001, it has published all Pokémon mobile apps worldwide and all Pokémon video games in Japan, with Nintendo being the publisher of console and handheld games elsewhere.

In February 2001, Pokémon USA, Inc. was established in Delaware, United States, and in March 2003 Pokémon UK opened its office in London, United Kingdom[1]. In 2009 these two merged to create The Pokémon Company International[7] which manages the franchise outside of Asia[4].

In July 2002, the company launched the Pokémon Hiroba website for mobile phones, and November that year it launched the official Japanese Pokémon website. In January 2004, it launched the Pokémon Daisuki Club[1].

Pokémon Korea, Inc. ((주)포켓몬코리아 (Corporation) Pokémon Korea) was founded as a subsidiary on August 28, 2006, to manage the franchise in South Korea[1][3]. In Australia and New Zealand, the Pokémon franchise is managed by Nintendo Australia.

Logo of the Pokémon Communications Company, a defunct subsidiary

A subsidiary called the Pokémon Communications Company (株式会社ポケモンコミュニケーションズ Kabushiki gaisha Pokémon Communications) was founded on March 8, 2010[1][8], to better reach customers in Asia. On January 25, 2017, The Pokémon Company and the Pokémon Communications Company merged, with the latter being absorbed back into its parent company[1][9]. In December that year, The Pokémon Company launched websites in China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam[10] and now uses the Pokémon Asia moniker for work in those countries.

On August 25, 2011, Pokémon Center Tokyo Co., Ltd. (株式会社ポケモンセンタートウキョー Kabushiki gaisha Pokémon Center Tokyo) was established to manage the company's Pokémon Center and Pokémon Store operations[1][11]. In March 2013 it was renamed to Pokémon Center Co., Ltd. (株式会社ポケモンセンター Kabushiki gaisha Pokémon Center)[12].

Subsidiaries

Logo of The Pokémon Company International

The Pokémon Company International

Main article: The Pokémon Company International

The Pokémon Company International was first established in February 2001, and is the subsidiary responsible for "brand management, licensing, marketing, the Pokémon Trading Card Game, the animated TV series, home entertainment, and the official Pokémon website" outside of Asia[4]. Kenji Okubo is President and CEO.

Logo of Pokémon Korea, Inc.

Pokémon Korea, Inc.

Pokémon Korea, Inc. was established in August 2006, to promote the franchise in South Korea and it manages licencing, video games, the Trading Card Game and web services[13] as well as the Korean Pokémon Store website. Lim Jae Boem is CEO[3].

Pokémon Center Co., Ltd.

Pokémon Center Co., Ltd. was established in August 2011 to manage the Pokémon Center brand and stores in Japan. Its operations include running Pokémon Store and Pokémon Center stores, maintaining the Pokémon Stand vending machines and operating Pokémon Center Online, as well as overseeing the design and manufacture of Japanese Pokémon Center brand merchandise. Yomiomi Uego is President and CEO[11][12].

Offices

The Pokémon Company & Pokémon Center Co., Ltd.

Roppongi Hills Mori Tower 8F, 6-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo 〒106-6108, Japan[2][12]

The Pokémon Company International

10400 NE 4th Street, Suite 2800, Bellevue, WA 98004, United States

3rd Floor Building 10, Chiswick Park, 566 Chiswick High Road, London, W4 5XS, United Kingdom

Pokémon Korea, Inc.

4F, ​​801 Sinsu-ro, Suji-gu, Yongin-si, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea[3]

Social activism

Following the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, The Pokémon Company launched the Pokémon with You campaign to raise funds for children affected by the disaster.

On June 12, 2020, The Pokémon Company announced that it would also be donating a minimum of $5 million USD following Pokémon GO Fest 2020 to charities supporting children, including education and mentorship opportunities for Black children.[14][15] This followed Niantic's announcement on June 3 that it would be donating $5 million USD of Pokémon GO Fest 2020 ticket sales to fund new projects from Black creators and US nonprofit organizations and The Pokémon Company International's announcement on June 3 that they would be donating $100,000 to the NAACP and $100,000 to Black Lives Matter.[16][17]

External links

The Pokémon Company

Corporate

History

Social Media

Pokémon Korea, Inc.

Corporate

Social Media

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Company History - The Pokémon Company (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Company Profile - The Pokémon Company (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 About Us - Pokémon Korea, Inc. (Korean) (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 About the Pokémon Company International - The Pokémon Company International (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  5. Business Summary - The Pokémon Company (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  6. Iwata Asks: "Just Being President Was A Waste!" - Nintendo (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  7. Pokémon Merges North American, European Operations - World Screen (archived from the original April 13, 2009; retrieved April 21, 2020)
  8. Pokémon Communications Company (Japanese) (archived from the original June 1, 2015; retrieved April 21, 2020)(requires Flash Player)
  9. Pokémon merges with Pokémon Communications, an affiliate company that promotes "Pokémon" - Social Game Info (Japanese) (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  10. Official Pokémon Website Launches in 10 Asian Countries - NintenoSoup (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  11. 11.0 11.1 Company Profile - Pokémon Center Co., Ltd. (Japanese) (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Company Overview - Pokémon Center Co., Ltd. (Japanese) (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  13. Business Information - Pokémon Korea, Inc. (Korean) (retrieved April 21, 2020)
  14. Pokémon on Twitter (retrieved June 25, 2020)
  15. Official Pokémon Twitter on Twitter (Japanese) (retrieved June 25, 2020)
  16. Taking action - Niantic (retrieved June 25, 2020)
  17. Pokémon on Twitter (retrieved June 25, 2020)