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Similar to Tectoy, who manufactured Sega hardware in Brazil, Playtronic were licensed to produce Nintendo products there. For Nintendo, licensing Playtronic to manufacture their consoles within Brazil meant they avoided the high import charges on products moving into the country. They were much later to the Brazilian market than Tectoy/Sega, and suffered as a result.

Playtronic began with Gradiente - an electronics company based in Manaus creating clone consoles. Gradiente then collaborated with Estrela, a toy manufacturer with no prior experience in electronics, in around 1990, Together, they began officially representing Nintendo in Brazil, as Playtronic. They released the SNES in late 1993, becoming the first company in the world to produce Nintendo products outside Japan. The NES actually came later, but particularly struggled due to the prevalence of NES clones already on the market and in homes in Brazil. The Game Boy was released in 1994, five years later than the rest of the world, but as even the Game Gear couldn’t compete with Sega’s home consoles, the Game Boy had little chance. They ceased production of all Nintendo products in 2003 and became inactive.

Ten years later, a businessman acquired the brand, with the aim of preventing Playtronic being forgotten. They now distribute mobile games.





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