|Founded||1965 (merger of Service Games and Rosen Enterprises)|
|Located||Ota, Tokyo, Japan|
Founded in 1940, Sega started up as "Standard Games" in Hawaii as a business to provide coin-operated amusements for military bases. The company moved to Tokyo, Japan in 1952 as "Service Games of Japan". In 1954, Rosen Enterprises Inc. was established by another American businessman to export art, but found great success with coin-operated photobooths and expanded into coin-operated games.
Sega Enterprises was officially formed in 1965 when Service Games and Rosen Enterprises merged; their first hit was a submarine simulator called "Periscope".
Over the next few decades Sega changed hands a couple of times, owned first by Gulf+Western, producing Frogger and Zaxxon. Gulf+Western then sold the US portion of Sega to the pinball business Bally Manufacturing after the videogame crash in 1983, while the Japanese business was bought by Rosen Enterprises founder David Rosen and Japanese businessman Hayao Nakayama. In 1984 the Japanese conglomerate CSK bought Sega and relocated its entire business to Japan under the name Sega Enterprises Ltd. The American subsidiary, Sega of America, was founded in 1986 to cash in on the growing videogame market there, launching the Sega Master System against Nintendo's NES.
The Sega Mega Drive (Genesis in the US) launched in 1989, accompanied by a new mascot in the shape of Sonic The Hedgehog, and a directly anti-Nintendo advertising campaign. This didn't pay off, and the company lost market share in the face of Nintendo's strong Super Nintendo lineup and the commercial failures of the 32X and Sega CD.
The Sega Saturn followed in 1994 (1995 in America), but despite strong Japanese sales the machine failed to gather momentum in America. Sega's last-ditch attempt to recapture part of the home console market was the Dreamcast in 1998/1999. Like the Saturn, the Dreamcast got off to a strong start but was ultimately devastated by Sony's PlayStation 2 before being discontinued in 2001 — a move which signaled the end of Sega's home console ambitions.
Sega is currently owned by Viacom and the Japanese conglomerate Sammy, under the official name Sega Sammy Holdings.
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Pages in category "Sega"
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