Head of Sega’s Struggling Unit in U.S. to Leave

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Video game giant Sega Enterprises, struggling in the face of intense competition from Sony and Nintendo, announced Monday that the head of its U.S. unit, Tom Kalinske, will leave the company as part of a sweeping management shake-up.

Kalinske, a well-known figure in the video game business, will take a job Oct. 1 as head of Education Technology LLC, a Los Angeles-based start-up formed in March by Oracle Corp. Chairman and Chief Executive Larry Ellison and former junk bond king Michael Milken.

The new company aims to use various advances in computer technology and entertainment to improve education.


To replace Kalinske, Sega named Shoichiro Irimajiri, a director and an executive vice president of the Japanese parent company, to the posts of chairman and CEO of Sega of America, based in Redwood City, Calif. Sega of America Chairman Hayao Nakayama and co-Chairman David Rosen also resigned.

Sega also hired Sony Computer Entertainment of America executive Bernard Stolar as executive vice president in charge of product development. Stolar will be responsible for working with software companies to write video games for Sega machines.

Sega is struggling to regain U.S. market share from rival Sony, which entered the video game player market for the first time last year and has captured a 12% share of the market. Analysts expect Sony’s share to double by next year, with much of it coming from Sega in the United States.

Kalinske is a six-year veteran of Sega of America.