Founded I June 1955 by Masaya Nakamura as Nakamura Manufacturing initially running children’s rides in a Yokohama department store.
In 1958 it became Nakamura Manufacturing Co and thence Namco.
In 1970 it launched a coin-operated mechanical driving simulator called Racer.
It acquired Atari Japan for $800k in 1974, part of the deal gave Namco rights in Atari games for Japan.
In 1977 it launched Namco Enterprises Asia Ltd in Hong Kong.
In 1978 it opened a US subsidiary, Namco America.
In 1985 when Atari was split in two by Warner Communications, Namco America acquired a controlling ownership in Atari Games for $10m. But internal disagreements led to the Namco America team leaving to reform Atari Games.
It became Nintendo’s first licensee for the NES and by 1989 this was responsible for 40% of Namco’s business.
It then diversified by entering the amusement park business.
In 1993 it launched Shanghai Namco Ltd, based in mainland China.
In 1993 it purchased the Aladdin’s Castle arcade chain from Bally to create Namco Cybertainment Inc, becoming the largest arcade operator in the United States.
In September 2005 it merged with Bandai to form Namco Bandai Holdings, becoming the third largest Japanese video game operation.
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