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Saudi Arabia increases Nintendo stake to 6%

Additional shares bought up via Public Investment Fund.

Six percent of Nintendo is now owned by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund, the financial scheme set up by the country's highly-controversial Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The state's growing stake has risen from 5.01 percent last May, when word of its investment first surfaced, to 6.07 percent now.

At the time, Nintendo said it learned of the investment from news reports and declined to comment further. This latest update comes from Nintendo's own report, via Reuters. We've contacted Nintendo for further comment.

Cover image for YouTube videoThe Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom – Official Trailer #1
Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom launches in May for Switch.

Saudi Arabia's PIF has invested heavily in video game companies worldwide, and now owns similar stakes in Capcom, Nexon, Koei Tecmo, EA, Activision Blizzard and Take-Two, plus a majority of SNK.

The idea behind the PIF is that it acts as a long-term investment fund for the Saudi state as the world slowly moves away from its dependence on Saudi oil, as well as a more respectable business-like front for the country despite Prince Mohammed bin Salman's own reputation.

The crown prince has been blamed by the CIA for the assassination of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, while his rule of Saudi Arabia has kept up the country's notoriously poor human rights record, with homosexuality still criminalised with punishments ranging from floggings to the death penalty.