Bandai Co.,Ltd.

Bandai Co.,Ltd.

Bandai Co.,Ltd. is a Japanese multinational toy manufacturer and distributor headquartered in Taito, Tokyo. Its international affiliates, Bandai Namco Toys & Collectables America and Bandai UK, are respectively headquartered in Irvine, California and Richmond, London. Bandai is a subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings and the main toy division of the parent company. From 1981 to 2001, Bandai produced game consoles.

Bandai was founded by World War II veteran Naoharu Yamashina as Bandai-Ya on July 5, 1950, as a corporate subsidiary of a textile wholesaler. The company started out as a distributor of metal toys and rubber floats before moving on to metal model cars and airplanes. In 1961, the company was renamed Bandai Co., Ltd. and has achieved significant success with its action figures based on the Astro Boy anime.

Story

Origins and success of toys (1947-1968)

In 1947, Naoharu Yamashina began working for a textile wholesaler in Kanazawa. The eldest son of a rice merchant, Yamashina studied business in high school and was drafted into World War II, where a grenade fragment blinded his right eye. The textile business, run by his wife's brother, was struggling financially due to Japan's post-war economy. He was making some money working, and as he had a hard time finding ways to let the business take off, a neighbor told him about the potential of the toy industry and the financial success that could come from it. Intrigued, Yamashina convinced his wife to come with him to Tokyo to begin exploring the potentially lucrative toy market. With little money or experience in the field,

Yamashina assumed full control of the toy division on July 5, 1950, when it was spun off into a separate company called Bandai-ya in Taito, Tokyo. The name comes from the Japanese reading of the Chinese phrase "bandai fueki" (万代不易), which means "ever-changing" or "things that are eternal". With the assistance of Atsuko Tatsumi, publisher of Weekly Toy News in Tokyo, Bandai-ya distributed and imported celluloid dolls, metal toys, and rubber swim rings. In the same year, the company released its first original product, the Rhythm Ball, a beach ball with a bell inside, which had numerous quality defects. Bandai-ya has improved the quality of its products by continuing to develop new types of toys such as inexpensive metal cars and model airplanes.

As revenue increased, Bandai-ya began to expand its operations. New shipping and storage facilities were built in the spring of 1953, followed by research and development (R&D) and product testing departments the same year. Waraku Works was opened in early 1955 to increase toy production. In the same year, the company introduced the first quality assurance system in the toy industry; The first toy he approved was a 1956 Toyopet Crown car model, which was also Bandai-ya's first warranty product. The growing company worked to create a friendly corporate image, introducing a new logo, slogan and television ads to highlight the quality of its products. Bandai-ya was renamed Bandai in July 1961,

Although her toys often sold well in Japan, Bandai did not achieve significant success until 1963, when it began producing action figures based on the Astro Boy anime. The success of the toy line prompted Bandai to reorganize and rethink its business strategies as the company moved from working on original products to funding new television series and acting as a sponsor during their run with ads showing Bandai's collateral activities. figures and costumes. A similar hit blockbuster was discovered with action figures similar to the Ultraman characters, due in large part to the popularity of the television series at the time; the figures were later released in North America to little fanfare. In July 1966, she released Crazy Foam, a line of bubble blowing cans that sold 2.4 million units in three months. thanks to the support of an extensive marketing campaign. Other Bandai products included Thunderbird electric cars, Water Motor bath toys, and the Naughty Flipper, the latter of which won a gold medal at the 1968 New York International Innovative Manufacturing Exhibition. In late 1969, an additional plant was purchased to further increase toy production.

Continued expansion and Mobile Suit Gundam (1971–1983)

Bandai continued to expand throughout the 1970s. The company entered into a joint venture with model car manufacturer Tonka in 1970 and created Tonka Japan KK as part of Bandai's ongoing mission to establish links with foreign companies. A year later, a subsidiary company, Popy, was created, which specialized in the production of toys based on popular children's characters. Although Bandai had become a major player in the Japanese toy industry, competing with companies such as Takara and Epoch, executives felt that the company needed to further expand into international territories to help build brand awareness worldwide.

Bandai continued to expand in the 1970s with the creation of several subsidiaries; Tonka Japan in 1970 after establishing a joint venture with Tonka, Bandai Models, established in 1971, and finally Popy, which specialized in the production of toy characters. Although not the most profitable range, 1/48th scale Bandai AFV models dominated this segment of the model kit market. Bandai America Inc. was founded as a local US sales and marketing arm in 1978. Spacewarp, a line of homemade "roller coaster" toy rolling balls, was introduced by Bandai in the 1980s.

Entry into the video game market (1983-1989)

In May 1980, Makoto Yamashina, the founder's son, became president of Bandai. Naoharu Yamashina became chairman of the board. Upon his arrival, Makoto Yamashina completely took over from Bandai's aging staff and replaced them with younger employees, with the intention of not only bringing in new ideas but also revisiting the band's strategy. The new president took a different commercial approach, selling directly to retailers rather than through middlemen.

In July 1980, Bandai released a plastic model Gundam based on the animated series that spawned the Gunpla series. In November, the Celent subsidiary was established.

Bandai became one of the first third-party developers of the Nintendo Family Computer in 1985. Among her first games was Tag Team Match: MUSCLE, a video game adaptation of the Kinnakuman manga that sold over a million copies. Bandai also released the Family Trainer Pad, released outside of Japan as the Power Pad, which also performed well commercially. A series of games have been released in both the US and Japan, including Athletic World and Stadium Events for the NES. Shortly after its release, Nintendo acquired the North American rights to the FFF mat, replacing it with their own updated Power Pad design. To maintain brand continuity, Stadium Events was taken off the shelves after a short period of availability in Woolworth stores. Because the game was taken off the shelves and out of production before as it sold many copies, Bandai's Stadium Events is universally recognized as the rarest licensed NES game released in North America. A shrink-wrapped copy of the game was sold on eBay in February 2010 for $41,270. A sister game, Stadium Events called Athletic World, was originally released with a label indicating compatibility with the Family Fun Fitness mat, but was later re-released with an updated label that mentions the Power Pad instead. Stadium Events was no longer released by name, but was instead slightly redesigned and relaunched as a World Class Track Meet game included in the Power Pad package. called Athletic World was originally released with a label indicating compatibility with the Family Fun Fitness mat, but was later re-released with an updated label, which instead mentions the Power Pad. Stadium Events was no longer released by name, but was instead slightly redesigned and relaunched as a World Class Track Meet game included in the Power Pad package. titled Athletic World was originally released with a label indicating compatibility with the Family Fun Fitness mat, but was later re-released with an updated label that mentions the Power Pad instead. Stadium Events was no longer released by name, but was instead slightly redesigned and relaunched as a World Class Track Meet game included in the Power Pad package. titled Athletic World was originally released with a label indicating compatibility with the Family Fun Fitness mat, but was later re-released with an updated label that mentions the Power Pad instead. Stadium Events was no longer released by name, but was instead slightly redesigned and relaunched as a World Class Track Meet game included in the Power Pad package. titled Athletic World was originally released with a label indicating compatibility with the Family Fun Fitness mat, but was later re-released with an updated label that mentions the Power Pad instead. Stadium Events was no longer released by name, but was instead slightly redesigned and relaunched as a World Class Track Meet game included in the Power Pad package.

Since the 1980s, Bandai has become Japan's leading toy company and to this day holds major gaming licenses in Japan for popular properties such as Daikaiju, Ultraman, Super Robot, Kamen Rider, the Super Sentai series, and Power Rangers (which it hosted participation in the creation), Gundam and many others. In February 1989, it acquired arcade game developer Coreland and reorganized it into Banpresto, which became Bandai's coin-operated entertainment division. In the early 1990s, Bandai published games for Nintendo in the United Kingdom, including Street Fighter II for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System.

Financial decline and unsuccessful merger with Sega (1995–1999)

In January 1997, Bandai announced that it would merge its operations with Japanese video game developer Sega. The merger, a $1 billion share swap in which Sega would acquire Bandai and dissolve the company, would create a new entertainment conglomerate called Sega Bandai Ltd. with revenues of approximately $6 billion. This announcement followed Bandai's 9 billion yen loss in the same month, which was attributed to declining game sales and poor reception of the Apple Pippin console. Bandai believed that Sega was a suitable company to merge, as it had American management and several international offices, as well as several successful franchises such as Sonic the Hedgehog. Opposition arose among Bandai employees and middle managers, as none of them believed that the company's family work ethic fits well with Sega. top-down corporate culture. As a result, Bandai canceled the merger in May and completed it in October. President Makoto Yamashina took responsibility for its failure by publicly apologizing and leaving his position at the company. Instead, Bandai agreed to a business alliance with Sega.

Namco takeover and restructuring (2005-present)

After merging with game developer and entertainment operator Namco in 2005, Bandai Company is now managed and a member of Bandai Namco Holdings (Bandai Namco Group). Since the group's reorganization in 2006, Bandai has led the Toys and Hobbies (SBU) strategic business unit. Bandai Entertainment announced it would end its distribution activities in January 2012. Beez Entertainment is no longer releasing new anime in Europe.

In February 2018, Saban Brands and Bandai's US division jointly announced a mutual agreement not to renew their primary Power Rangers toy license from spring 2019, after which rival toy company Hasbro will inherit the license. This transition will not affect Bandai Japan Super Sentai's main gaming license with Toei.

The subsidiary Bandai Spirits was established on February 15, 2018. On April 1, 2018, the adult customer product division of Bandai Co., Ltd (including action figures and plastic models) and the prize business of Banpresto was transferred. at Bandai Spirits.

Organizational structure

Bandai is headquartered in Taito, Tokyo, Japan. The company has offices in the United States (Bandai America), Mexico (Bandai Corporacion Mexico), United Kingdom (Bandai UK), as well as in France, Spain, Taiwan and mainland China. In the past, it has had offices in Hong Kong, South Korea, Thailand, Germany and East Asia, acting as distributors for Bandai products in their respective countries. Bandai is a wholly owned subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings and leads the Strategic Business Unit of its parent company, Toys and Hobbies (CSBU).

Bandai is one of the largest and most profitable toy companies in the world, along with Mattel and Hasbro. The company focuses on creating unique and innovative products for its consumers, as well as deviating from established industry conventions; its slogan "Breaking Beyond" was made in connection with this.

Subsidiaries of Bandai

Bandai Spirits Co., Ltd. produces action figures and plastic models targeted at the elderly using popular licenses such as Mobile Suit Gundam, One Piece, Pokémon, Kirby, Hatsune Miku, Demon Slayer, Ultraman, and My Hero Academia. Bandai manufactures confectionery, board games, and capsule toys through its subsidiary MegaHouse Corporation, which also produces toys and action figures under its MegaToy label. MegaHouse also licenses the Rubik's Cube in Japan and has created several variations of the toy specifically for Japanese audiences. Manga series, TV shows, and character products are produced by a subsidiary of Plex. Bandai Namco Collectables LLC, formerly Bandai America, imports and distributes collectible figures made by Bandai in the United States.