Interesting news has broke online regarding Bluefin Corp, otherwise referred to as Bluefin Tamashii, the Japanese toy distributor. On Wednesday, Bandai Namco Holdings announced that they acquired an 80% controlling stake in Nippon Imports, LLC, the company that owns and operates Bluefin. Now, with this transaction Bandai Namco will establish a new subsidiary, Bandai Namco Collectibles in October that will continue operations under Bluefin. However, Bandai Namco Collectibles will effectively commence operations in January 2019.
Nippon Imports, LLC founder and CEO Steve Fujimura will serve as Bandai Namco Collectibles’ CEO, and will maintain a 20% stake. Whereas, Bandai Namco America’s senior vice president, Kōji Iwata will be the company’s COO. In addition, Bandai Namco Holdings explained that the acquisition of Bluefin was to strengthen and speed up its sales in North America. Furthermore, Bandai Namco seeks to use Bluefin’s knowledge of organizing fan-oriented events, and its pre-existing distribution network.
Fans should assume that Bandai Namco Collectibles will continue to provide Gundam model kits, Dragon Ball S.H.Figuarts and other anime related content to North America. However, it is unsure if Bandai Namco’s direct involvement will help expand the distribution of tokusatsu products from series like Ultraman, Kamen Rider, and Super Sentai. Furthermore, with Hasbro acquiring Power Rangers, it could lessen the chance of certain Super Sentai items being distributed to North America. Never the less, we will need to wait to learn more on Bandai Namco Collectibles operations, so please tuned to Hero Club for further updates.