Atari embraces cryptocurrencies and sees its stock prices soar

Atari, the company that dominated the early years of the American video game industry, has fallen on hard times. Despite the company’s storied history and influence on the gaming industry, it never truly recovered from the video game crash of 1983. The company is still around, however, and recently saw its stock prices soar as it announced a new line of Atari-branded cryptocurrency tokens.

Bloomberg has reported that shares of the Paris-based company rose by 60 percent following the announcement that it had partnered with Infinity Networks to create a new cryptocurrency known as “Atari Tokens.”

The company is also planning on working with online casino company PariPlay to create a separate currency that will be called”Pong Tokens,” which will be used in online casinos.

“Blockchain technology is poised to take a very important place in our environment and to transform, if not revolutionize, the current economic ecosystem, especially in the areas of the video game industry and online transactions,” said Atari CEO  Frederic Chesnais. “Our aim is to take strategic positions with a limited cash risk, in order to best create value with the assets and the Atari brand.”

The term “Atari Token” may be a bit confusing for some, as it was the name previously used for Atari’s own reward system. The two names are likely unrelated, though it is possible that Atari may try and combine the two systems in some way.

Atari is far from the only brand to embrace cryptocurrencies. Kodak’s shares saw a 245 percent increase in value in the days following the announcement that it had partnered with another company to create a blockchain-based service for photo purchases. Even businesses completely unrelated to the tech industry have gotten involved. Last December, the Long Island Iced Tea company saw its stock prices rise by 183 percent after it rebranded itself as Long Blockchain Corp.

Atari’s entry into the crypto market at least makes more sense than an iced tea company doing the same. The company was one of the earliest leaders of the video game industry, and is planning a return to the console market in the form of the upcoming Ataribox.