Atari, SA

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Atari, SA
Public (EuronextATA)
Industry Software & programming
Predecessor Infogrames Entertainment, SA
Founded 1983 (as Infogrames Entertainment, SA)
2009 (as Atari, SA)
Headquarters Paris, France
Key people
Frédéric Chesnais (Chairman and CEO)
Laurence Betito (CFO)
Denis Bunma (Legal counsel)
Products Centipede: Infestation
Dungeons & Dragons: Daggerdale
Neverwinter Nights
Yars' Revenge
Test Drive Unlimited 2
Revenue Increase €7.6 million (2014-15)
Increase €1.5 million (2014-15)
Increase €1.2 million (2014-15)
Total assets Increase €8.8 million (2014-15)
Total equity Increase €-13.3 million (2014-15)[1]
Subsidiaries Atari, Inc., Atari Interactive

Atari, SA (ASA) is an international French holding company headquartered in Paris, France. It was originally called Infogrames Entertainment, SA (IESA). Its subsidiaries include Atari London Studio, Atari Interactive and Atari, Inc..[2] Because of continuing pressures upon the company, and difficulty finding investors, it sought bankruptcy protection under French law in January 2013; its subsidiaries in the United States have sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection there as well.[3] All three subsidiaries have since exited bankruptcy, and are all going through a vigorous turnaround campaign.

Transition from Infogrames Entertainment[edit]

During their fiscal year meeting (May 2009), IESA announced that it would be changing its corporate name to an Atari-branded name, in line with the use of the name for its subsidiaries. In reference to this, Atari, Inc.'s CEO Jim Wilson said: "We've gotten rid of the Infogrames and Atari duality, the confusion around that. We are one simplified company, under one management team, under one brand."[4]

Infogrames' May 29 earnings report stated:

The Board agreed to change Infogrames Entertainment’s name to Atari. This decision will enable us to make the best use of the Atari brand, capitalizing on worldwide strong name recognition and affinity, which are keys drivers to implement the Company’s online, product and licensing strategies.[5]

A later July 24 earnings press release further clarified a name change from the May 29 report, with a change from Infogrames Entertainment, SA to Atari, SA It additionally stated the continued use of Atari Group for its Atari-branded and related subsidiaries.[6]

On April 19, 2010, Atari, SA announced Nolan Bushnell along with Tim Virden would join the company's Board of Directors.[7]

As of March 31, 2011, the Board of Directors consisted of Frank Dangeard, Jim Wilson, Tom Virden, Gene Davis, Alexandra Fichelson.[8]
Jim Wilson (COO)[8]

As of August 2014, the Board of Directors consisted of Frédéric Chesnais (chairman), Frank Dangeard, Tom Virden, Erik Euvrard, and Alyssa Padia Walles.[9]

BlueBay restructuring[edit]

On October 21, 2010, Atari announced Atari's reference shareholders BlueBay Value Recovery (Master) Fund Limited and BlueBay Multi-Strategy (Master) Fund Limited are exploring a disposal of the shares and equity-linked instruments held by them.[10] However, BlueBay shareholders later interrupted the sale process of its holding in Atari.[11] BlueBay later converted the conversion of a portion of the ORANEs held by them.[12]

In 2012, Atari, SA, BlueBay Value Recovery (Master) Fund Limited, and The BlueBay Multi-Strategy (Master) Fund Limited reached an agreement following their negotiations regarding the restructuring of the debt and capital structure of the Atari group. As part of the agreement, the €20.9 million Credit Facility Agreement was extinguished via €10.9 million loan forgiveness from BlueBay Value Recovery (Master) Fund Limited and Atari's payment of €10 million; the cancellation of the dilutive effect of the ORANEs held by BlueBay; €20 million capital increases to be submitted to the vote of Atari shareholders (of which €10 million with preferential subscription right).[13]


On January 21, 2013, Atari, Inc., Atari Interactive, Inc., Humongous, Inc. and California US Holdings, Inc. (collectively, the "Companies") filed petitions for relief under chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.[14]

In July 2013, Atari began to sell its game assets, developers and the famous tripod logo and the Atari name in auction. The Battlezone and Moonbase Commander games were bought by Rebellion Developments. The Backyard Sports franchise was sold to Epic Gear LLC and later to Day 6 Sports Group LLC. Tommo bought Humongous Inc. and over 300 different games (Including games from the company Accolade and Math Grand Prix.) Total Annihilation was sold to Wargaming and lastly, Star Control was bought by Stardock. Atari also had plans to sell off the Test Drive and RollerCoaster Tycoon franchises. Eden Games also closed down during the bankruptcy, but reopened up a year later as an independent developer.

In 2014, All 3 Ataris emerged from bankruptcy and entered the social casino gaming industry with Atari Casino.[15] Frédéric Chesnais, who now heads all three companies, stated their entire operations consist of a staff of 10 people.[16]

In December 2016, 3 years after the bankruptcy sale, Atari sold the Test Drive franchise to BigBen Interactive.

Turnaround strategy[edit]

In 2015, Atari announced a turnaround strategy that would focus on re-releasing the catalog of Atari games. The strategy is focused on " download games, MMO games, mobile games and licensing activities, based in priority around traditional franchises."

Projects currently in production or included in the turnaround strategy include:

  • Alone in the Dark: Illumination for PC (solo or multiplayer action and adventure game), in which players face off against Eldricht’s hordes using supernatural illumination powers to defend themselves, survive and complete the adventure. Upon release the game was met with negative reception.
  • RollerCoaster Tycoon World for PC (offline or online, solo or multiplayer game), enabling players to create original theme parks with incredible attractions. This is the follow-up to RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 for PC.
  • Pridefest, an LGBT-friendly mobile social simulation game, enabling players to manage their cities and design their own parades, while creating a network of friends.
  • Lunar Lander for mobile, the famous lunar landing simulation game that helped build ATARI’s success in the past in the arcade game sector and will now delight nostalgic fans of the franchise on smartphones and tablets.[1]

On June 8, 2017 a short teaser video was released, promoting a new product;[17] and the following week CEO Fred Chesnais confirmed the company was developing a new games console - the hardware was stated to be based on PC technology, and be still under development.[18] In mid July 2017 an Atari press release confirmed the existence of new hardware, referred to as the Ataribox. The box design was derived from early Atari designs (eg 2600) with a ribbed top surface, and a rise at the back of the console; two versions were announced one with a traditional wood veneer front, and another with a glass front. Connectivity options were give as including hdmi, USB (x4), and SD card - the console was said to support both classic and current games.[19] According to an official company statement of 22 June 2017 the product was to initially launched via a crowdfunding campaign in order to minimise financial risk to the parent company.[20]

Business strategy[edit]

Atari's overall strategy has four main focuses:

  • Continuing to move forward with the business recovery and turnaround plan;
  • Capitalizing on the Atari brand and the intellectual property portfolio thanks to strategic partnership and licensing activities;
  • Limiting the risks involved by focusing on partnerships: Atari will be looking into commercial partnerships on a case-by-case basis with a view to maximizing the benefits of its vast intellectual property portfolio, its brand and all its assets;
  • Limiting operating expenditure and striving to improve profitability: Atari will continue to ensure strict control over investments and costs.[1]


  • Atari Group, name acquired from Hasbro Interactive in January 2001.
    • Atari Benelux
    • Atari Brazil Ltd.
    • Atari Corp. (UK) Ltd.
    • Atari Deutschland
    • Atari France
    • Atari Hellas EURL
    • Atari Iberica Distribucion
    • Atari ITALIA
    • Atari, Inc. in New York, New York, U.S founded as GT Interactive in 1993, acquired in December 1999, renamed as Infogrames, Inc. in 2000 and Atari, Inc. in 2003.
    • Atari Japan
    • Atari Korea Ltd.
    • Atari Interactive in New York, New York, U.S founded as Hasbro Interactive in 1995, acquired in January 2001 and renamed Infogrames Interactive. Renamed again to Atari Interactive in 2003, merging the former Atari Interactive with it.
    • Atari Nordic
    • Atari UK Ltd.

Former subsidiaries[edit]

These were studios that were either formally apart of Infogrames, GT Interactive, Hasbro Interactive or associated with the Atari name.


  1. ^ a b c Atari, SA Annual Report 2014-2015 (PDF)
  2. ^ "Anthony Jacobson and Pierre Hintze Hire Release FINAL" (PDF) (Press release). Atari. October 7, 2009. Retrieved June 28, 2012. [permanent dead link]
  3. ^ "Nocookies". The Australian. 
  4. ^
  5. ^[permanent dead link] p. 2
  6. ^[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Nolan Bushnell, Tom Virden, Join Atari Board of Directors, That Gaming Site, 19 April 2010
  8. ^ a b Atari, SA Annual Report 2010-2011 (PDF)
  9. ^ "Atari, SA Corporate Governance". Atari. Retrieved August 15, 2014. 
  10. ^ Reuters Editorial (21 October 2010). "Atari: Proposed transfer by BlueBay of its holding in ATARI". Reuters. 
  11. ^ Reuters Editorial (31 January 2011). "BlueBay to interrupt the sale process of its holding in Atari". Reuters. 
  12. ^ 1ST HALF OF FY 2011/2012 RESULTS Unaudited preliminary data – Ongoing audit process Approved by the Board of Directors on November 4, 2011.
  13. ^ Atari, SA and BlueBay reached a agreement for the restructuring of the debt and capital structure of the group
  14. ^ "Atari Files For Chapter 11 To Separate From French Parent". Retrieved September 4, 2013. 
  15. ^ Brett Molina (March 26, 2014). "Atari resets with jump into social casino gaming". USA Today. Retrieved March 26, 2014. 
  16. ^ "Atari and FlowPlay team up to offer social casino games - GamesBeat - Games - by Dean Takahashi". VentureBeat. 
  17. ^ "First look: A brand new Atari product. Years in the making", Ataribox, Youtube, 8 June 2017 
  18. ^ Takahasi, Dean (16 June 2017), "Atari CEO confirms the company is working on a new game console", 
  19. ^ Walker, Alex (17 July 2017), The First Look At The Ataribox, Atari's New Console 
  20. ^ Le Groupe Atari réaffirme sa stratégie de croissance rentable à l’issue du salon des jeux vidéo E3 de juin 2017 (PDF) (press release) (in French), Atari SA, 22 June 2017, Le 30 mai 2017, à l’occasion de la publication de son chiffre d’affaires annuel, le groupe Atari a annoncé la « (…) préparation d’une campagne de relations publiques et de crowdfunding pour tester la viabilité d’un nouveau produit hardware pour les jeux vidéo ». Le Groupe a depuis diffusé une vidéo dévoilant un premier design de ce nouveau produit, dont les fonctionnalités et les caractéristiques techniques seront annoncées selon l’avancement des travaux. Le Groupe estime qu’il est en mesure de développer un produit attrayant, utilisant la notoriété de la marque Atari dans le domaine du hardware. Pour limiter la prise de risque, ce produit sera initialement lancé dans le cadre d’une campagne de crowdfunding.