Sammy has announced the acquisition of 39,148,600 Sega shares valued at 45.3 billion yen ($420.65 million USD) from CSK. This makes the Pachislot giant Sega's largest shareholder (owing a stake of 25.4%) and made the company behind Sonic, Virtua Figher and Sakura Taisen an affiliated company accounted for by the equity-method. Sammy founder and president Hajime Satomi mentioned his company would be interested in acquiring an even greater stake in one of Japan's largest third party publishers at a later point.
A proposed merger between Sammy and Sega fell through in the last minute earlier this year, following a disagreement over the share exchange ratio. The breakdown of the negotiations with both Sammy and Namco led to the resignation of then-Sega president Hideki Satou and the appointment of former Hitmaker CEO Hisao Oguchi as his successor. Under Oguchi, Sega has not only drastically changed the organisational structure of its internal development teams, but also found its way back into the black.