One of the final hurdles to Sammy's plans to merge with Sega next October was surmounted yesterday, when Sega's shareholders gave their approval to the 3.8 billion Euro deal at the company's AGM in Tokyo.
There was never really any doubt that the meeting would vote in favour of the deal - not least because Sammy boss Hajime Satomi already controls almost a quarter of Sega's voting stock - but it's an essential rubber-stamp for the proceedings regardless.
The next major step in the deal comes on September 27th, when both Sega and Sammy's shares will be withdrawn from trading on the Nikkei stock exchange, followed by the issuing of shares in Sega Sammy Holdings on October 1st.
The terms of the deal remain that Sammy shareholders will receive one share of Sega Sammy Holdings for each Sammy share they own, while Sega shares will be exchanged for 0.28 shares of the new corporation - giving Sammy overall control of the new entity, as expected.
Sega and Sammy will continue to operate separately within the new corporation at first, but the eventual plan is that four divisions will be formed - with Pachinko and Pachinslot using the Sammy brand and covering its gambling machine operations, while Sega's brand will be applied to the amusement and computer games division. The other two divisions will be media content and network (liable to be heavily dominated by the Sega brand again) and "miscellaneous operations."
Once completed, the deal will have been one of the largest mergers ever to happen within the games industry. The company it creates will be a behemoth with over half a trillion Yen in revenue for 2005 - around 3.8 billion Euro, making it into one of the largest publishers in the world.