A screenshot of MapleStory, one of Nexon's most well-known games.

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Saudi Arabia PIF Adds Stakes in Capcom, Nexon

February 4, 2022

By: Brian Renadette

 
 

Yesterday on Bloomberg (paywall), it was announced that the Saudi Arabia PIF (Public Investment Fund) now has stakes in Capcom and Nexon. This marks the latest acquisition by Prince Mohammed bin Salman and his investments into video games.

According to Bloomberg, these stakes, which were described as "pure investment," were purchased sometime between January 25 and January 31. The Saudi Arabia PIF, a $500 billion fund that's been building up stakes in video games and eSports over the last two years, spent one billion of that fund to get stakes of over five percent in both Capcom and Nexon. This means that it won't have a controlling stake in either of the companies like it does with SNK. The PIF had actually been losing money on its investment in Activision Blizzard, but Microsoft's purchase of the company has turned that loss around.

 

A screenshot of Resident Evil Village, one of Capcom's big recent releases.

The PIF is the creation of Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who's a known fan of video games and is leaning his country away from its reliance on oil. However, he's also a controversial figure for a variety of reasons. His country is known for having a poor human rights record, in particular towards homosexuality. He's also been blamed by the CIA for the assassination of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi. One of the Prince's ambitious plans, a futuristic city-state built in a barren section of the country, has also been accused of forcefully moving and potentially killing Huwaiti tribe members to make way for the city. Controversies such as these were one of the big reasons League of Legends cancelled a partnership with the country shortly after it was formed.

 
 

In addition to its video game investments, the Saudi Arabia PIF also has stakes in companies such as Uber, Live Nation Entertainment, and owns 80% of Newcastle United.

A picture of me, Brian Renadette
Former Staff Writer

I am a graduate of Southern New Hampshire University with a major in writing and a minor in gaming. I have a passion for video games and writing. I also enjoy volunteering at my local SPCA by walking the dogs.