Last year, then SEGA President Kenji Matsubara left the company after six years. Matsubara first became CTO of SEGA Networks Company, and then SEGA gaming’s head honcho. Following his promotion to Chief Publishing Officer, Matsubara left the company three months later, touting “personal reasons.” After months and months of radio silence, we now know where Mr. Kenji is headed next: SNK.
This week, GamesIndustry.biz reports Kenji Matsubara was hired by SNK to be their CEO. SNK has been around for quite some time, creating memorable franchises like Fatal Fury, Samurai Shodown, King of Fighters, and Metal Slug. This is what SNK had to say about the former SEGA boss:
“We will aim for further growth and an increase in corporate value under his leadership…With the appointment of Kenji, we promise that SNK is positioning itself for a new phase of growth and development.”SNK
Back in November 2020, SNK raised some eyebrows when the crown prince of Saudi Arabia’s charity bought a 51% stake in the company. The Mohammad bin Salman Charity Foundation’s goal is to “cultivate and encourage learning and leadership in youth for a better future in Saudi Arabia.” As many news outlets have previously reported, Saudi Arabia has a very poor human rights record, declaring homosexuality to be a crime punishable by death. Bin Salman was also in the news with ties to the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Not exactly a ringing endorsement for SNK.
With Kenji Matsubara at the helm of SNK, it’ll be interesting to see the direction this former SEGA president takes the company. What do you think of this new update? Share your thoughts with us below!