Saudi Arabia increases stake in Nintendo

Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, Public Investment Fund (PIF), has become Nintendo’s largest outside shareholder with an 8.3% stake. PIF has increased its position in the Kyoto-based games company from just above 6% at the start of the year. The investment puts PIF ahead of Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund and behind only Nintendo’s own holding.

Under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Saudi Arabia is trying to break into the games and esports industry. The PIF umbrella set up Savvy Games Group with a $38 billion budget and longtime industry veterans in charge. It has made its first foray into China’s games sector with a $260 million investment in a Tencent Holdings Ltd-backed competitive gaming organiser.

The latest Nintendo stake purchase was made for investment purposes, according to the filing. It is part of Saudi Arabia’s long-term project to become less reliant on oil. PIF’s investments are guided by the Saudi state’s goals for 2030, which include building strategic economic partnerships and bringing home cutting-edge technology. Nintendo marks PIF’s third investment in a Japanese game company that hit the public disclosure threshold of 5%, along with Nexon Co. and Street Fighter maker Capcom Co. in 2022.

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