January 29, 2014 2:00 pm JST

Tomy to sell Tatsunoko Production to TV station

TOKYO -- Nippon Television Holdings, a private Japanese boradcaster, will acquire anime company Tatsunoko Production from major toy maker Tomy, The Nikkei learned Wednesday. The deal is expected to be worth several hundred million yen.

     Nippon Television aims to expand its lineup of popular programs through the acquisition. Fierce competition in the broadcasting industry because of the growing number of channels available and popularity of Internet services have forced companies to look for ways to expand.

     Tomy acquired Tatsunoko Production in 2005. It currently holds a 74.3% stake in the animation producer on a voting-right basis. The company failed, however, to achieve synergies between its core toy and animation production businesses.

     With group business performance deteriorating, Tomy decided to divest Tatsunoko Production. The company incurred a net loss of 7 billion yen ($67.5 million) on a consolidated basis in the last fiscal year ended March 31, 2013.

     Tatsunoko Production, founded in 1962, has produced many hit Japanese animated series, including "Honeybee Hutch" and "Gatchaman."