View Full Version : Dow Jones: Nintendo Denies Reported Willingness To Sell Rare Stake

Black Ace
09-12-2002, 08:19 AM
Nintendo Denies Reported Willingness To Sell Rare Stake
Thursday September 12, 3:37 am ET

TOKYO -(Dow Jones)- Nintendo Co. (J.NTD or 7974) Thursday denied a U.S. media report it is "willing to sell" a controlling stake in U.K. game software developer Rare Ltd.
There has been speculation about Microsoft Corp.'s interest in buying Rare to make more software exclusively for its Xbox console. A Nintendo spokesman said, hypothetically, the company would consider what to do with its Rare shareholding if actually contacted by Microsoft or Rare, but there hasn't been any such contact.


Nintendo owned 38% of Rare's voting rights through U.S. subsidiaries at the end of last March, but Rare hasn't supplied any software for Nintendo's Gamecube or Game Boy consoles over the past one year or so, the spokesman said.

The Los Angels Times said in a separate report Microsoft is interested in acquiring Rare, citing unnamed sources.

On the Tokyo Stock Exchange Thursday, Nintendo shares ended up 2.6% at Y14,380 Thursday. The Nikkei 225 Stock Average closed up 0.2% at 9415.23.

09-12-2002, 09:03 AM
Well, this adds quite a twist to all the latest "Rare is for certain going to Microsoft" rumors...

I'll transfer this bit of news to the *Official* Rare thread over at the General Gaming Discussion Board- where all the cool kids hang out to talk about Rare :rolleyes:

09-12-2002, 09:18 AM
What's with those stupid rumors anyway! Give us the truth once and for all for Pete's sake!
I hate Micro$oft (and Rare if they go with them).

09-12-2002, 09:25 AM
I SO hope Nintendo hasn't sold their shares of Rare hasn't sided with M$. I mean I dont care if they do or not, as long as I can have 1 more thing on my list to TRASH IGN with. They 'staked their reputation' on this latest rumour. It would rule so hard if they are wrong again.

I'll put this beside my 'Thief 3 and Deus Ex 2 are XBox exclusives', plus some game I forgot where they CLAIMED they witnessed it at a meeting thing where the developers were secretly show casing it off to the media, but turned out that there was NO screening at all cause the game had bugged up earlier to developers pulled out. Or something like that.. What was that thing Seska!!


Dr.Nick Riviera
09-12-2002, 09:39 AM
so what games do rareware have lined up other than SFA any body know . and were is Perfect Dark Zero

09-12-2002, 11:14 AM
Nintendo publicly downplaying Rare's importance is an obvious sign that their relationship has gone sour.

From Gaming-Age.

"Software giant Microsoft Corp. is considering acquiring U.K. game developer Rare in a bid to jump-start development of its own video games for the Xbox, a source close to the discussions said on Wednesday.

Separately, a source close to Nintendo Co. Ltd. , which owns 49 percent of Rare, said the Japanese game and console maker had the opportunity to buy Rare outright and passed, clearing the way for a possible Microsoft acquisition.

The source familiar with the discussions said Microsoft is "definitely looking at (Rare) as an acquisition target." He said Microsoft had approached Rare recently, but said he was unaware of the status of talks.

Calls to Rare were not immediately returned on Wednesday. A spokeswoman for Microsoft declined to comment.

Based in Warwickshire, England, Rare Ltd. is a privately held, 20-year-old development studio best known for its James Bond action game "GoldenEye" and the classic "Donkey Kong Country."

The company has long had an exclusive relationship with Nintendo, which acquired 25 percent of Rare in the 1990s and now owns 49 percent of the company.

Nintendo, however, decided not to buy Rare in large part because of the company's declining contribution to overall software sales, and Nintendo's decision not to commission any further exclusive titles from Rare, the source said.

Sales of Rare games accounted for 9.5 percent of Nintendo's fiscal 2001 total software unit sales, the source said, but only 1.5 percent in fiscal 2002.


For a smaller operation, Rare has developed something of a cult following among avid gamers for developing games with top-of-the-line graphics.

The Rare source said the game studio's reputation plus its ties to Nintendo make it a coveted asset for Microsoft, which needs to build up its library of exclusive Xbox game titles."

09-12-2002, 11:21 AM
Umm.. how can they publicly downplay the company- if they decide to remain as an anonymous "source"?

09-12-2002, 12:53 PM
By pointing out that Rare's games only account for 1.5% of Nintendo's revenue. The only way to get that kind of information is either from Nintendo or Rare themselves. Why let such details out? To downplay how important Rare is in the current GC climate. Think about it, if Rare does go under the Xbox umbrella, Nintendo points out they are only losing 1.5% of the revenue so the impact is little. A source doesn't reveal such info by accident.

09-12-2002, 01:31 PM
But they common sense dictates that the reason that they only account for 1.5% percent is because they haven't released anything in a while!

That figure might rise.. albeit only moderately, since it is just one title, after SFA is released.

To tell you the truth, I don't think anybody really knows what's going on over ther- to include all the parties involved.

09-12-2002, 01:31 PM
Sorry, I know this topic has been done to death, but I have to weigh in again with doubts that Rare's capable of delivering as much anymore. Their final glory days (Killer Instinct, Donkey Kong Country, Goldeneye) are IMHO way behind them, with their platform genres either supersaturated--even their nasty Banjo didn't stir up sales like it did controversy--or their development teams diluted: Perfect Dark might have benefitted with the Timesplitters Free Radical Design squad. Star Fox Adventures, a hand-me-down amalgamated project, which Namco might do truer to the original, anyway. Everything else is licensed dross, and the Big N's got better 2nd parties (like Camelot) for that.

DBJAY, I wouldn't get too excited about a Microsoft acquisition. After all, all they'd be acquiring is a bunch of old-hat, second-rate franchise characters. (They couldn't even cross-platform "their" Donkey Kong!) Nothing new or innovative that you once criticized Nintendo for not offering, either.

09-12-2002, 01:40 PM
Well truth be told, a lot of talented people HAVE already left Rare.. but we'll just have to see just how bad off, or even if they're bad off or not, with StarFox...

09-12-2002, 04:26 PM
Here is Nintendo being a little more direct....

"Kyoto, Japan, Sept. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Nintendo Co., the maker of the GameCube video-game system, said it may consider selling shares in U.K. gamemaker Rare Ltd. if Microsoft Corp. becomes a major shareholder.

Rare has been making fewer games for Nintendo in recent years and the sale would have ``little impact for us,'' Nintendo spokesman Yasuhiro Minagawa said. Microsoft is in talks to buy Rare, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing unidentified people familiar with the negotiations."


So does a Nintendo spokesperson finally prove the point that Nintendo is publicly belittling Rare's importance? This is a sign that the relationship has gone south.

09-12-2002, 04:32 PM
And i found one statement that said Nintendo said they will not sell there part
check it out in the official thread in general discussion! ..So now who is telling the thruth? The one say this the other say that.!! Okay from now on i'll ignore all these things untill the official anouncment ! :irked"

09-12-2002, 08:45 PM
nintendo owns everything anyways. the rights to conker, banjo, perfect dark, killer instinct, anything that is donkey kong. soooo nintendo wont lose much imo. i have heard they are selling rare to buy part of sega.

09-13-2002, 12:48 AM
I think seeing Star Fox made by Sega would rock my world.

09-13-2002, 07:05 AM
Or Treasure wouldn't be a bad choice either i think! SEGA will defently be a good choice also! Lets hope ! :cool guy:

09-13-2002, 07:42 AM
Yeah, maybe here IS something going on.. maybe Rare won't be a MS 2nd party.. but maybe they'll still leave Nintendo. The *Official thread* has more info on this. This would, in part- work with Nintendo not selling their shares just yet.

Anyway- which part of Sega should they own? What development teams?

09-13-2002, 05:53 PM
I wonder how the Namco Starfox game will turn out? It was a shock to see Nintendo hand off development of one of their franchise titles to a third party.

09-13-2002, 06:23 PM
Originally posted by DBJAY
It was a shock to see Nintendo hand off development of one of their franchise titles to a third party.

Remember, at the same time it was announced that Sega would be doing the next F-Zero game, both part of the Triforce arcade plan. And isn't Treasure doing Wario? Outsourcing their franchises guarantees revenue for both parties (which do you think Namco would make more on, Starfox or Starblade), yet gives Nintendo, Miyamoto et al. final say--say, creatively; though how Conker's Bad Fur Day slipped by, I am at a loss--and allows them to dedicate more of their in-house resources to the development or acquisition of new ones.

09-16-2002, 08:56 AM
Yeah, at first it seemed like a shock to me too- but at least:

a) the devs they gave it to can make it work
b) Nintendo still is supervising, or a t least has input, over the project

Nintendo seems to be moving away from the 2nd party scene and outsourcing their franchises... better move?