Which Major Video Game Company Also Owned A Major League Baseball Team?
It seems like a rather unlikely mating, a major video game company and a Major League Baseball team, but that’s exactly how things ended up for the Seattle Mariners pro baseball team.
In the early 1990s, the Mariners were in rough financial shape. Nintendo of America, based out of Redmond, Washington, leveraged the capital of Nintendo of Japan and purchased 54 percent of the team for 67 million dollars—effectively securing majority ownership. In 2004, Nintendo of Japan passed the majority ownership stake directly over to Nintendo of America.
At the time, Nintendo was the only major video game company to own a major sports team and one of only four corporations to own a Major League Baseball team—the other three corporately-owned teams are the Atlanta Braves (Liberty Media), the Toronto Blue Jays (Rogers Communications), and the Washington Nationals (Lerner Enterprises). In 2016, however, Nintendo sold a significant number of shares (reducing their ownership stake to 10 percent) and the principal ownership of the team now belongs to First Avenue Entertainment limited partnership, led by businessman John W. Stanton.
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