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IR Top Page > Developer Interview 2011 > vol08.Katsuhiko Ichii
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Developer Interview 2011

08. Katsuhiko Ichii / Director and Executive Corporate Officer in charge of Consumer Games Business

Bringing development and marketing together - Actively revamping the organization to promote quick decision making

- First of all, the second organizational reform was to integrate the development and marketing divisions. What is the advantages do you now have with this new structure?
The reform has made it easier for development and marketing to communicate with each other and share information more frequently. It has also helped to dramatically improve communication between our divisions here in Japan and other countries. As the head of marketing, I used to have to spend the extra time coordinating ideas with the head of development. The new organization has unified the decision making process, enabling us to smoothly and rapidly enact the decisions made.
- How did you feel when you were placed in charge of the development division?
Shortly after I took over the development division I met individually with the main members. What I found was that Capcom's traditional philosophy of aiming to deliver the best quality and game experience is still very much alive and well. I am confident that as long as we remain true to this philosophy and continue to make the type of games people have come to expect from Capcom, we'll be in a position to shape the future of the industry.
- Did you have any problems when you dramatically overhauled the organization and structure of the development division?
Not really. When we held a meeting to discuss our strategy, I fully explained to everyone what our two main objectives were. Our first aim is to be rated by users as the world's best in terms of game quality. Our second aim is to become the most profitable game company in the world. Essentially, it all boils down to generating a positive cycle. If we produce games that users support, these games will sell well and turn a profit, giving us the funds we need to invest in developing the next line of games.
- I'm sure there are times where it's difficult to be profitable and deliver a high level of quality. How do you make decisions in these cases?
Everything depends on making excellent games. From the management perspective, however, we still need that business eye for turning a profit. At Capcom there is never a case in which the development division makes a decision on its own. The final decision is always made after the executives and heads of development, sales, and management get together and hold discussions on a number of different levels. That's the way we approve the development of a new title. There are some developers in the division who are not only creative, but also have good managerial skills. I see these people as potential leaders who will take us into the next generation, so I want them to be at the center of decision making process.
- What do you think is the most important thing about sharing information between divisions?
We provide each other with detailed information, sharing things such as schedules and updates on the progress of QA checks. In addition to basic information like game release dates and development progress, it's important for both divisions to discuss and share ways to promote our games at events like E3 and the Tokyo Game Show. Everybody needs to be on the same page as we work to raise people's awareness and generate interest in our games during the period leading up to the release of a new title.
- What would you say is different following the organizational change?
On a whole I think everyone is more proactive and motivated. They're more excited about their work. More and more people are getting involved and exhibiting a stronger sense of responsibility. I also feel that the organization is becoming increasingly more open.
- In regards to the new structure, what exactly are you aiming to achieve?
The most important thing for us is to "maximize our results." By promoting the free exchange of ideas and making rapid decisions, I'm looking for us to achieve the best possible result for each game. At the same, I don't want all of this talk of putting objectives first to have a negative impact on the guys in development. They represent Capcom's "artisan spirit", and that vision is something we need to hold dear.
Back to Developer Interview 2011 Top Page
  1. 08.Katsuhiko Ichii
  2. 07.Masaru Ijuin
  3. 06.Masachika Kawata
  4. 05.Hiroyuki Kobayashi
  5. 04.Yoshinori Ono
  6. 03.Yoichi Egawa
  7. 02.Manabu Seko
  8. 01.Takeshi Tezuka

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