Sega Sammy Shows Interest in Getting Into Online Gambling Sector

  • CEO Haruki Satomi says Sega may use investment funds to enter the sector
  • Online betting may become a priority for the company if opportunities arise
  • Sega Sammy is also considering investing in NFT and M&A options.
  • Disney and Twitter have also announced potential sports betting market entries
Sega Genesis
Video game company Sega Sammy is considering expanding its horizons and getting into the online gambling market. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

From video games to online gambling

The online gambling market may soon have an attractive new operator offering services after a recent announcement by Sega Sammy. The Japanese video gaming company may transition into the iGaming sector as part of a business improvement plan. Known for creating video game content and consoles, the move would be a completely different operation format for the company.

Video gamers know the company for its Sonic the Hedgehog character and games like Streets of Rage and Gunstar Heroes. Originally branded Sega, the company now goes by Sega Sammy after merging with the Sammy Corporation in 2004.

Sega Sammy investment plans

During the recent second-quarter financial results, Sega Sammy announced that the company plans to invest JPY100bn ($8.7m) to improve the overall business. CEO Haruki Satomi stated that the company is considering using the funds in several ways, including entering the online gambling market.

Satomi said that within the next three years, opportunities may emerge in the domestic IR business that may interest the company.

if there are opportunities to invest heavily in other areas…there is the chance we prioritize them”

“….in the meantime,” Satomi explained, “if there are opportunities to invest heavily in other areas, such as online betting, which is gaining force overseas, there is the chance we prioritize them.”

Sega Sammy is also considering exploring investment opportunities in non-fungible tokens (NFT). The company is open to using its mergers and acquisitions experience if the right option becomes available.

Haruki did not offer a specific region for the potential investment, but it appears as though the growing United States market is a likely option for the company.

Disney, Twitter also considering sports betting

Along with Sega Sammy, major companies like Disney and Twitter are interested in entering the gambling industry. In early November, Disney CEO Bob Chapek mentioned in a Q4 2021 earnings call that the company was considering using its ESPN subsidiary brand in the market.

During the call, the CEO stated that Disney sees an enormous opportunity within the sports sector. Chapek pointed out that ESPN+ has seen a subscriber increase of 66% in the past fiscal year.

Research conducted by Disney shows that adding sports betting to a subsidiary brand like ESPN would not harm its image, as it might have in the past. Sports betting is more accepted today in the United States than it was just a decade ago.

This week, Twitter announced that it is considering sports betting as engagement grows within the NFL and college football sectors. This football season, Twitter has seen significant growth in fan engagement connected to users and American football. Members of the site are tweeting more about NFL and college football games, leading the social media company to consider gambling services.

US sports partnerships manager for Twitter, David Herman, has shown interest in moving the company into the betting sector. Twitter has streamed live sporting events, but the company has now switched to signing partnership deals that will work better for users.

One example is a partnership with Fox Sports. Twitter users can go online and select a camera angle to watch the first five minutes of its Big Noon Saturday game, a unique way that Twitter can offer fan engagement.

Currently, Twitter has several agreements with sports companies but no official partner.