Forget the joystick. Atari SA — perhaps best known for 1980s video-games “Pac-Man” and “Space Invaders” — is now jumping on the cryptocurrency bandwagon.
Shares in the Paris-based company have soared more than 60 percent since it gave further details of its crypto push on Feb. 8, after first mentioning some of the plans in December. Atari is taking a stake in a company that’s building a blockchain-based digital entertainment platform and, as part of that agreement, it will create its own digital currency called Atari Token. The company is also expanding its online casino-gaming partnership with Pariplay Ltd. to allow gambling with digital currencies.
“Blockchain technology is poised to take a very important place in our environment and to transform, if not revolutionize, the current economic ecosystem, especially in the areas of the video game industry and online transactions,” Atari Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Frederic Chesnais said in the statement. “Our aim is to take strategic positions with a limited cash risk, in order to best create value with the assets and the Atari brand.”
Atari isn’t the only stock that has benefited from links with cryptocurrencies. Shares of Eastman Kodak Co. jumped 245 percent in two days after it said last month it’s working with a company that promotes paparazzi photos to offer a blockchain-based service for paying photographers. And, in perhaps the most bizarre of such moves, the unprofitable iced-tea company formerly known as Long Island Iced Tea Corp. gained 183 percent in a day after re-branding as Long Blockchain Corp. in December.