The French video game group Atari, one of the pioneers in the sector, announced on Tuesday a major reorganization with a change of general management and the creation of a “blockchain” division, responsible for developing its own cryptocurrency.
The American Wade J. Rosen, current chairman of the board of directors of Atari and majority shareholder, becomes the new CEO. He replaces the French Frédéric Chesnais, in post since 2013, who will be in charge of the development of the “Blockchain” and “Licenses” activity.
With “the immense possibilities offered by cryptocurrencies”, the main objective of the new division will be “the further development” of the Atari Token, the group’s cryptocurrency, and to assess the opportunities in the market for ” NFT “, virtual objects in vogue and, in theory, non-piratable, he announced in a press release.
Towards a new IPO?
Atari is studying, “among several options”, the possibility of making this division an “autonomous entity with a view to a possible demerger for the benefit of Atari shareholders through the listing of this new entity,” he said. added.
In the area of ”Licenses”, the group founded in California has already announced in early March an agreement with a holding company for the construction of “Atari hotels” in Dubai, Gibraltar and Spain, where customers will be “immersed” in the universe of his games.
Despite disappointing results in the first half, with turnover down 27% to 7.8 million euros, the share price has doubled since January 2021, valuing the company around 250 millions of euros.
Pioneer of arcade and then console video games with Pong, launched at the end of 1972, Atari was saved from bankruptcy in February 2013 by Ker Ventures, the holding company of Frédéric Chesnais and by the American fund Alden. It claims a portfolio of over 200 games and franchises.