Just checked out the "Computer & Video Games" website and it had this:


Sega misery deepens as financials loom Speculation ran rampant last night on the future of Sega, after president Irimajiri's resignation and the prospect of a massive loss announcement this week

Heavy talk spread across the 'net of a buyout of Sega by either Microsoft or Sony last night in the wake of yesterday's Nikkei report that Shoichiro Irimajiri is to step down as president this Friday. The announcement is almost certain to come alongside Sega's financial figures for the fiscal year '99 to 2000, which are expected to show a loss of at least ?300 million.

Mainstream financial press leapt on the story as Sega's position worsened. UK money paper The Financial Times reported that, "Sega's shares, which are down 63 percent since February 9, fell almost 3 percent to Y1,670 yesterday [May 22] despite the company's denial of reports that Shoichiro Irimajiri, its president, would resign because of the poor performance of the Dreamcast game machine."

With Dreamcast sales in Japan falling by over 50 percent behind predicted targets and the imminent release of PlayStation 2, Sega's prospects are looking increasingly bleak, despite a strong showing at E3. The new president, Isao Ohkawa - formerly head honcho of Sega parent company CSK - will oversee the moving of the company onto an increasingly online footing, and is likely to prepare Sega for a merger or buyout of some kind.

After Friday's announcement, the company will have posted losses for three years in a row. Its marketing strategies now include giving away free copies - probably in the region of 500,000 - of puzzler Chu-Chu Rocket in Europe and 4 million Dreamcast units in the US before 2001, on the proviso that gamers submit to its ISP for two years. The cost will be enormous - just how deep are Sega's pockets?

Patrick Garratt
Wednesday, 24 May 2000


"Computer and Video Games" is the world's first games magazine and currently in its 223rd issue. It's a highly respected British publication from the company that made the Official Saturn Magazine."