Japanese video games giant Nintendo yesterday opened its first store in Israel and only its second worldwide (the other is in New York) in Tel Aviv's Dizengoff Center, at an investment of NIS 3 million. An estimated 2,500 fans and shoppers queued up outside the 150-square meter store. They waited for hours to enter, some wearing costumes of the characters identified with the company's brands.
The new store offers an extremely wide variety of Nintendo products and products produced under official license from Nintendo, including clothing accessories, dolls of famous characters, and other accessories.
The man behind the new store is Tor Gaming founder, chairperson, and president Eran Tor, the official marketer of Nintendo in Israel. "Nintendo is a brand that will outlast even Google. Its connection with people is emotional," Tor told "Globes." For Tor, this is a historic moment and the realization of a dream, after trying for over a decade to persuade the Japanese giant to open such a store in Israel. Last April, the company launched an Israel e-commerce website for the sale of Nintendo products, but Tor does not rule out selling in Amazon's local arena, noting that when Amazon launches its activity in Israel, he will not hesitate to found an online store through it.
Sources at Dizengoff Center say that this is the second largest launch in its history after the launch of Xiaomi last year, which attracted 3,000 people. Tor was also involved in the third largest launch there by iDigital, attended by 1,500 people.
Nintendo is one of the world's most recognizable brands, thanks to characters like Mario, Pokemon, Donkey Kong, and Zelda, together with consoles such as Nintendo Switch and Game Boy Wii.
The company was founded in 1889 in order to manufacture game cards. In the 1970s, it changed its focus to game consoles, In the late 1980s, Nintendo launched Super Mario Brothers, one of the bestselling games in history.
The brand's flagship store was opened 14 years ago in Rockefeller Center in New York, and the store in Israel is the second in the world to bear the brand name. Nintendo recently announced that it was planning to open a third store in Tokyo.
Eran Tor founded and managed iDigital and iConGroup, the official distributor of Apple in Israel. Tor Gaming's CEO is Ron Kaldes.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on June 25, 2019
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