History of Sega in India
From Sega Retro
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|History of Sega in India|
|Official Sega distributor(s): Shaw Wallace Electronics (1994-1995), Maze Marketing (1995-1999), SPA Enterprises (2000-2002), New Era (2005-2012), E-xpress Interactive (2008-present)|
The history of video games in India is difficult to reconstruct because for many years it has not been archived in any way.
India were treated internally as being part of the "Asian" region, which effectively equates to everything east of Europe excluding Japan and South Korea (and presumably countries Sega could not market their products for legal reasons).
Video game piracy was rampant in India which can throw research off course. Many products were imported from other Asian regions and presumably the likes of Europe, Japan and North America. India uses the PAL-B format for televisions, meaning any Asian products with an NTSC sticker were not intended for India.
Shaw Wallace Electronics
Due to trade laws in India until 1993, every international company would have to share its with to an Indian company. Nintendo entered the Indian market in 1987 with the NES console under the name Samurai. Unfortunately, the console was not popular in India. There is currently no information that Sega has entered the Indian market with Master System in the changed name.
After the abolition of this law in 1993, Sega began to look at the Indian market. They got along with Shaw Wallace Electronics an off-shoot of a liquour company who started assemble and distribution of Sega arcade machines in Mumbai. However, Shaw Wallace was not going to stop there. They also wanted to acquire console distribution rights. In March 1994 they acquired the rights to sell Sega Mega Drive and starting from end of April 1994 Shaw Wallace began distribution of 16 bit console in the four metros, with an asking price of 18,000 rupees. Only the second Mega Drive model was sold - the original model did not make it to the region. The investment cost $3 million.However, the price was too high.
In December 1994, Sega announced that Shaw Wallace Bangalore would be producing Sega video games in India from spring 1995, thanks to which it will sell about 120,000 units. This will allow Sega to bypass the 80% import tariff on game units. Price were dropped to 14,660 rupees. Despite the production of the console in the country and the launch of advertising on television, the console did not sell as intended by the distributor.
At the end of 1995, the sale of Sega games was started by Maze Marketing runned by Rakesh Dugar, who stated that he could better promote Sega consoles. Sega Japan has developed a new sales strategy. Prices were dropped once again, but this time people could get Mega Drive along with free games like Michael Jackson's Moonwalker and Sonic the Hedgehog. Dugar created another set with Brian Lara Cricket, because cricket was the most famous sport in India. The new strategy was a success, and even consoles from the former Shaw Wallace distribution were sold. Maze Marketing also tried to sell Sega Saturn in India but the console was too expensive and less popular.
In 1997, Daytona USA and Virtua Cop 2 were popular arcades in India, a game cost 20 rupees.For this reason, Sega together with Mitsubishi and Mahindra & Mahindra planned to build entertainment centers in India. According to Sega, JV was expected to generate revenues of 2 billion yen by the end of 1999. It is not known how it ended.
Between 1997 and 1998, the market in India began to change and the sale of video games dropped especially due to the low interest of Nintendo, Sega and Sony in this region. In 1999, members of Maze Marketing created Mitashi Edutainment and sales of 8-bit console clones began. These consoles have become increasingly popular in India. In the sale of clones, Mitashi was inspired by the Sega strategy that was previously used in India. The first console sold by Mitashi contained Cricket, which increased the popularity of their new equipment.Later Mitashi released 16-bit clones modeled on Mega Drive, including Game In Xtreme.
November 21, 2000 it was reported that Sega Dreamcast will be present in India through three companies. SPA Enterprises who was a representative of Sega promised to provide Internet service and release the games, Stracon India Limited focused on distribution and Data Acces India worked on home page and portal management. Dreamcast was released in December and it was estimated that by the end of 2002, 1 million consoles will be sold, which is not confirmed especially because the console failed in other parts of the world.Stracon sold games until stocks ran out in August 2002.
Games from Empire were first distributed by Educomp Datamatics. Later E-xpress distributed them in the series under the name E-Value.