4Kids gives up Pokémon license
4Kids Entertainment announced today that beginning in January, licensing of the English-language dub of the Pokémon anime will be put under jurisdiction of Pokémon USA, Inc.
"We felt it was in the best interest of the Pokémon property for Pokémon USA, Inc., to assume all aspects of licensing," said Akira Chiba, President of Pokémon USA, Inc. "This was a brand management decision. We would like to thank 4Kids for all of its great work over the last eight years in helping to establish Pokémon as one of the leading children's brands in the world."
Under the agreement terms, 4Kids will receive commissions for the next several years on payments made under existing Pokémon license agreements. These commissions are expected to be paid out over the course of the next several years.
4Kids will continue to produce the eighth season of the Pokémon anime. It is unknown whether Pokémon USA will take control of the production of the series, but it should be noted that this agreement seems to concern only the licensing of the series outside of Asia, not the production.