Nintendo has announced that it is collaborating with mobile game developer DeNA to establish a new joint venture company called Nintendo Systems Co. Ltd.
According to the establishment notice written by Nintendo on Tuesday, the Nintendo Systems Co. Ltd. will be a subsidiary since Nintendo is contributing 80% of the capital required to run it. It will be focused on research and development, as well as “operations to strengthen the digitalization of Nintendo’s business.” It will also work to create “value-added services” that Nintendo says will reinforce its relationship with its customers.
The joint venture between Nintendo and DeNA was seven years in the making, as the latter company has been developing mobile games for the former since 2015, including Fire Emblem Heroes, Pokémon Masters, and Mario Kart Tour. However, DeNA will be expanding beyond developing games for smartphones, as Nintendo will be tasking it with “the joint development and operation of membership services for various devices.”
Nintendo Systems Co. Ltd. is scheduled to open on April 3, 2023. It will be based in Tokyo with director and president Tetsuya Sasaki at the helm.
DeNA has created some other mobile games that operated as social networking apps, such as Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, and Miitomo. Although it launched on iOS and Android alongside the My Nintendo loyalty program in 2016 and gave users Mii’s personality, Miitomo didn’t garner the same level of popularity that Tomodachi Life and (eventually) Miitopia did, so its service was discontinued in 2018. The company also created Super Mario Run, one of Nintendo’s first forays into mobile gaming.