It seems that Index, the parent company for Japanese game publisher Atlus, is pulling a THQ, selling off its assets amid a fraud probe and a shocking drop in market value. A post on GameInformer offers up the information, gleaned from a translated article from Bloomberg in Japan.
According to the post, Index’s troubles began with an investigation for “round tripping,” which is explained as “a mechanism in which sales numbers are inflated to defraud investors.” Then, a day before the fraud probe was to begin, Index’s market value fell from $67.7 million to $10.8 million, converted from Japanese Yen. With that, and Index’s bankruptcy, the company will be delisting its stock from the Nikkei, or the Japanese Stock Exchange, two of its highest executives will resign, and the company is looking to raise ¥15 billion from selling off its subsidiaries.
As to what that will mean for the future of Atlus, it’s unclear. Hopefully another publisher will swoop in and buy the publisher and its assets for a song—and maybe not lay off everybody in the process. There’s rarely a happy ending when this kind of thing happens, but I can’t really see Atlus as an entity disappearing. I have a feeling that, for gamers, at least, we’ll still get the titles that Atlus was planning on putting out.
Just look at THQ: that company is goner than gone, but at this point, just about all of its assets have found homes elsewhere. Except for 1666, of course…we’ll probably never see that one.