While Team Secret has been making waves in the Fighting Game Scene with their new acquisitions over the past week, things have not been going well over at Team Mad Catz.
It has been reported recently that the contracts of two of Mad Catz’s players, Hajime “TOKIDO” Taniguchi and Kenryo “MAGO 2DGOD” Hayashi, have expired since March of this year.
Both players have been doing well so far in Street Fighter V. In the past two Capcom Pro Tour Premier Events, Tokido took 2nd place in both tournaments while Mago came in at 3rd and 13th respectively. At present they are participating in the Street Fighter V Crash event in Korea together with EVO 2015 champion, Evil Geniuses’ Yusuke Momochi. The three are currently under the “Team Topanga” banner.
In a recent interview, the two informed the public regarding the loss of their sponsorship. While both players are unsure as to what happens next, they mention that they are still open to the possibility of renewing their contracts.
In the FGC, Mad Catz is known for manufacturing and designing arcade sticks used by many competitive players. Their Tournament Edition line of products have become commonplace in some of the biggest fighting game events since the genre’s resurgence in 2009.
However, it would seem that their popularity among fighting game fans is not substantial enough to keep the company afloat.
Mad Catz has been going through a crisis of sorts in recent times. In June of 2015, they released a statement of facing the prospect of closure if the company was unable to raise its income by a large margin. Then in February of this year it was reported that three of Mad Catz’s big executive heads had resigned. This was followed by a plummet in shares at the New York Stock Market (as large as 22%) and an announcement that they will be laying off 37% of their current workforce as they go through company-wide restructuring.
Taking these into consideration, the entire situation begins to make more sense.
Though their partnership with Mad Catz may be coming to an end, when a door closes a window opens. If what’s happening over at Team Secret is any indication, these two top players probably won’t be staying free agents for long.