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The CEO Of Pokémon Wants To Keep The Franchise Going For Hundreds Of Years


“I spend all day every day thinking about Pokémon”

The Pokémon franchise has remained enormously popular since its inception in the mid to late 1990s, but The Pokémon Company’s COO Takato Utsunomiya says the ultimate goal is for it to last for centuries.

In an interview with The Guardian Utsunomiya stated that he thinks about Pokémon “all day every day,” working to ensure the brand’s long-term viability:

“My job? I spend all day every day thinking about Pokémon. Our goal is to keep Pokémon alive for hundreds of years – making sure it survives well past our lifetimes.”

It seems reasonable to want a beloved brand to be relevant for hundreds of years, but consider what “hundreds of years” really means. It’s been a long time. Consider William Shakespeare: the playwright was active around the turn of the 17th century, or “hundreds of years” ago. Nonetheless, his work is still studied and appreciated today. It takes something truly special to remain relevant after such a long time; can Pokémon do the same?

A beautiful piece of art showcasing many Pokemon in the Pokemon universe.

It’s not really our place to say. Fans will ultimately decide, but for the time being, it appears that the Pokémon train isn’t slowing down any time soon. Despite some well-documented technical issues with the franchise’s most recent mainline games, Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, this is the case. In the interview, Utsunomiya also made a passing reference to this topic, stating that:

“we can’t always be 100% aligned with what parts of the community are asking for. Regardless of whether we publicly respond, we’re always paying very close attention to the feedback and conversations happening in the communities. There are certain aspects where we can’t always be 100% aligned with what parts of the community are asking for and what we want to provide. But we do this with the desire to keep Pokémon going for a very long time, and I believe that the fans and players are aligned with us in that respect.”

This statement may not be comforting to those who were particularly irritated by Scarlet and Violet’s problems, but there’s no denying that whatever The Pokémon Company is doing right now, franchise sales haven’t suffered.