It is being reported that anime studio Artland is closing down due to financial difficulties. According to corporate credit research company Teikoku Databank, the anime studio accrued 298 million yen ($2.62 million) in debt since December 2016. Artland ceased operations on June 30 and are going through a post-operation process to settle their remaining debts.
Artland was a fan favorite studio that was founded in 1978 by director Noboru Ishiguro. The studio built an early reputation as a co-producer on some anime’s biggest sci-fi titles, which included Super Dimension Fortress Macross, Megazone 23, and Legend of the Galactic Heroes.
Most modern fans best know Artland for producing adaptations of Mushishi and Katekyō Hitman Reborn! With the production of Mushishi, the studio gained a reputation for putting “quality” at the forefront of their works. Artland’s last anime projects include Demon King Daimao, Senran Kagura, and Sin: The 7 Deadly Sins.
According to Teikoku Databank, Artland’s annual earnings saw a sharp decline between 2013 to 2016. In the three-year period, their earnings went from 260 million yen ($2.29 million) to 21 million yen ($184,000). Teikoku Databank states that even though the Mushishi series was a hit, outsourcing costs would eat away at any profitability. It was reported that nearly 90% of Artland’s production was outsourced.