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Pokemon US president steps down - Licensing.biz

Pokemon US president steps down

Akira Chiba leaves the company following the successful expansion of the brand outside of Japan.
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After having spent five years with the company, Pokemon USA president Akira Chiba is leaving to pursue other opportunities.

Chiba joined the New York headquarters back in 2002 when the company was founded. During his tenure, the Pokemon brand has expanded greatly outside its home territory of Japan.

Kenji Okubo, previously executive VP, will take over the role of president from January 1st 2008, says Escapist Magazine. His responsibilities will include overseeing all Pokemon activity outside of Japan in New York, Seattle and London, including the likes of trading cards, the animated TV series, North American and European licensing and the newly launched Pokemon Trading Figure Game.

"The brand is topping industry charts across all categories - including video games, toys and trading card games - plus the Pokemon animated TV series is hugely successful on Cartoon Network," said Okubo. "We thank Mr Chiba for his efforts on behalf of Pokemon and wish him success in the future."

Pokemon celebrated its tenth anniversary last year, with the brand experiencing something of a resurgence in popularity.

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