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Chiba to resign as Pokemon USA head


NEW YORK Pokemon USA president Akira Chiba will resign at the end of this year, the company announced last week. Chiba joined Pokemon USA in 2002 when the company’s New York office was established, the brand’s first corporate headquarters outside of Japan.

Chiba will be replaced by Kenji Okubo, previously evp and head of Pokemon USA’s Seattle office, effective Jan. 1, 2008.  Okubo will manage Pokemon’s operations in New York, Seattle and London, and will oversee all Pokemon initiatives outside of Japan.

"During Mr. Chiba’s tenure, Pokemon USA has greatly expanded,” said Okubo.  “The brand is topping industry charts across all categories -- including video games, toys, and trading card games -- plus the Pokemon animated TV series is hugely successful on Cartoon Network.  We thank Mr. Chiba for his efforts on behalf of Pokemon and wish him success in the future."

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