Throwing in the hat?

SNK Playmore has been acquired by a group of Chinese investors, is reporting.

Ledo Millennium has paid $63.5 million for 81.25 percent of the company's shares, purchased from former SNK CEO Eikichi Kawasaki and his wife Natsuyo Kawasaki.

Chinese companies Oriental Securities and Shunrong Sanqi have also joined together to invest in Ledo Millenium. Oriental Securities subsidiary Dongfang Xinghui will be the majority shareholder.

Dongfang Xingui CEO Zheng Jianhui has stated that he aims to emulate "the Marvel formula" when it comes to making the most of SNK Playmore's vast selection of IP, which includes Fatal Fury, King of Fighters, Metal Slug and Samurai Shodown. Xingui also aims to collaborate with Chinese companies to develop games, anime, manga, TV shows and movies.

SNK began life back in 1978 as Shin Nihon Kikaku. During the '80s it would create a series of arcade titles before cooking up its Neo Geo arcade standard. The system would host the vast majority of SNK's most famous games, many of which are available on the Wii Virtual Console.

When SNK ran into financial troubles in 2001, founder Eikichi Kawasaki started another company, known as Playmore. He would then purchase SNK's IP and rename his new venture SNK Playmore. In recent years the company has struggled to gain the attention of a new generation of players. An attempt to revive the Neo Geo brand - a handheld console called the Neo Geo X - gained media attention but ended in a confusing farce as SNK Playmore took legal action against the maker of the device, Tommo Inc.