In June Atlus' Parent Company, Index Holdings announced it had unfortunately fallen into some financial difficulties and entered what is known as "civil rehabilitation proceedings" in Japan - essentially bankruptcy - in order to resolve its debt problems.
The company reportedly stated it would be willing to sell off its assets and operations, one of which being Atlus.
Naturally, this has piqued the interest of many publishers and Bloomberg Japan is reporting that there are around 20 interested parties - one of which is SEGA.
According to the cited sources, Index will select candidates as early as next week and the business will be transferred by the end of August 2013. Atlus is clearly a valuable asset and bids have reportedly climbed as high as 20 billion yen ($201 million/ £132 million/ €151 million), up from the 15 billion yen Index previously estimated.
Atlus has stated it is proceeding with its business as usual. Based on the report, the company should not have any problems finding interested parties and hopefully a deal can be worked out soon.
Nintendo and Atlus have had a close working relationship lately, highlighted by the recent North American Fire Emblem: Awakening and Shin Megami Tensei IV promotion, which sees owners of both titles receive $30 of eShop credit. There have been rumours circulating that Nintendo may be willing to acquire the firm but no substantial evidence has emerged just yet.
Would you like to see SEGA pick up Atlus? If not, who do you think should? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section.