The Japanese video game and pachinko giant intends to ramp up its feature film production as part of the rebrand.

Sega Sammy Holdings, parent company of the Japanese video game and pachinko giants, has relaunched its computer graphic animation subsidiary under the name Marza Animation Planet Inc.

The subsidiary, previously named Sega Sammy Visual Entertainment (SSVE), was established in June 2009 with the intention of becoming the largest family-oriented animation studio in the Asia Pacific region by 2014.  

The July 1 rebrand aims to give the company a more global image as it ramps up its feature film production. The concept behind the new company name is a distant planet where the greatest children’s stories are born.

“Marza aims to produce feature-length CGI animated films for global distribution,” stated CEO Koichi Fukazawa, who continues his post from SSVE.

Until now, the company’s sole credit was 2008 3D CG animated short Sonic: Night of the Werehog (pictured), produced by Sega before the subsidiary’s establishment to tie-in with action game Sonic Unleashed

Coinciding with the relaunch is the Marza Story Circus competition, set up to solicit story ideas from Japan and overseas for animated children’s and family films.

The open contest, run in partnership with local production company 100 Meter Films, offers cash options for rights to adapt selected entries into Marza productions.