Japanese video game publisher and developer
Jaleco Ltd. (株式会社ジャレコ, Kabushiki Kaisha Jareko) was a corporate brand name that was used by two previously connected video game developers and publishers, based out of Japan. The original Jaleco company was founded in 1974 as Japan Leisure Company, founded by Yoshiaki Kanazawa, before being renamed to simply Jaleco in the early 1980s. This company was later acquired in 2000 by PCCW, who rebranded it as their Japanese game division, PCCW Japan, before being reverted to Jaleco in 2002. In 2006, Jaleco became independent from PCCW and renamed to Jaleco Holding, having their video game operations spun-off into a new company also called Jaleco. This new spin-off company was sold to mobile developer Game Yarou in 2009, with Jaleco Holding renaming itself to Encom Holdings shortly after.
Jaleco is known for its arcade and home console video games produced in the 1980s and early 1990s, including City Connection, Bases Loaded, Ninja JaJaMaru-kun, Exerion, Idol Janshi Suchie-Pai and Rushing Beat. Jaleco would also produce arcade cabinets for other game developers, alongside redemption arcade games and UFO catcher claw machines. In the past, the company produced amusement park equipment and aquarium parts, under their JAQNO brand name. Their North American division, Jaleco USA, would publish a number of titles for the NES and SNES, including Maniac Mansion, Pinball Quest and R-Type III.
In 2014, Jaleco's parent company Game Yarou filed for bankruptcy, causing Jaleco to vanish from the video game industry. The company's video game assets would be purchased by City Connection, an indie Japanese studio that continues to use their games for other side projects and licensing deals (the company itself being named after one of Jaleco's games). The original Jaleco company, Encom Holdings, would quit the video game business in 2009, citing stiff competition in the industry, instead dealing in real estate. Encom would soon dissolve in 2013, being delisted from the JASDAQ that same year.
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