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Al Kahn

Back in the day, 4Kids Entertainment played a large role in Pokemon’s distribution outside of Japan. Al Kahn, who was formally CEO of the company, took a business trip to the country when he stumbled upon the franchise. He then pitched the idea of bringing the IP west to Pokemon’s owners (including Nintendo). While that was met with reluctance, Kahn felt it could become a hit and was able to gain the rights to the game and anime outside of Asia when he offered money to get the franchise released overseas.

Pokemon is known as Pocket Monsters in Japan. However, Kahn “didn’t like the name” as it felt similar to other monster games. “I wanted the name to be more Japanese-y,” he told The Washington Post.

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