One Piece Film Red One Piece Film Red

Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund Public Investment Fund (PIF) has upped its stake in Japan’s Toei Company from 5% to 6.03%.

The move comes as PIF continues to diversify its media assets. Last month, the organization raised its stake in Nintendo to 8.26% and teamed with the Singapore state fund GIC to purchase $966 million in bonds from Korean entertainment-tech firm Kakao Corp. The organization also invests in gaming companies including Nexon, Capcom, and Koei Tecmo.

News of the increased Saudi investment, reported by Reuters, comes just weeks after Toei published its ten-year financial plan. In that document, the company re-evaluated its place in an increasingly globalized content market and recognized that audiences are becoming more spread out and more diverse.

By focusing on content for the global marketplace and establishing production bases outside of Japan, including in the U.S., the company hopes to grow its international revenue as a share of its total revenues from 30% today to 50% by 2033.

To that end, Toei is aiming to produce two live-action films and one animated feature per year aimed at a global audience, in hopes of generating box office grosses of around 3 billion yen (USD$23 million) for each. The company also indicated it will invest further in virtual production and artificial intelligence tools.

In 2022, Toei had its best-ever year at the box office, earning 32.56 billion yen (USD$246.6 million) domestically thanks to blockbuster releases such as One Piece Film Red and The First Slam Dunk. The company’s previous record of 17.98 billion yen ($136.2 million at today’s exchange rate) was set in 2009.

Pictured at top: Toei’s One Piece Film Red

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