The Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia’s flagship charity bought one-third of the Japanese game company SNK. And it’s aiming for more.
An investment of 813 million rials (£ 162 million) from a subsidiary of the Mohammed bin Salman charity “Misk” charity is equivalent to 33.3% of SNK’s stake and the company’s value is about £ 490 million. .. In a memo to the press, Misuk said the deal stipulates that the deal would buy an additional 17.7% of SNK’s stake and raise ownership to 51%. It will give it a majority stake.
The MiSK Foundation is at the heart of the desire to expand the Mohammed bin Salman brand abroad, and this investment is another move in that direction. But it certainly attracts criticism. The assassination of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi was due to Salman by the CIA, the human rights record in Saudi Arabia is notorious, and homosexuality remains a crime with punishments ranging from puddle to death.
Misuku, who touts himself as a non-profit organization aimed at empowering the youth of the kingdom, but has been accused of being merely a way to hone the crown prince’s reputation, is in itself controversial. ing. In November 2019, the U.S. Department of Justice linked one of its executives to a spy recruitment on Twitter. Saudi Arabia is said to be reviewing Misuku’s activities.
In September 2019, the Guardian newspaper held a workshop for 300 people after criticism from human rights groups after it was revealed that part of the event was funded by Misuku. I reported that I canceled it. In November 2018, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation withdrew funding, and in July 2019, Harvard University Extension School canceled a contract to reserve a portion of the summer school location for students sponsored by Misuku. ..
This is not the first time Saudi Arabia has participated in a video game. In July 2020, League of Legends developer Riot terminated a controversial sponsorship agreement with Saudi Arabia’s urban project Neom for the League of Legends European Championship in response to serious criticism from fans.
Today’s SNK is not last year’s SNK, but in recent years it has released several high-quality titles, including the fighting game Samurai Spirits and SNK’s Handheld Classic on Nintendo Switch. We are currently working on a new Metal Slug game.
SNK has not yet commented on this transaction.