Square Enix sells IP and studios for $300M
Japanese video game giant Square Enix is selling much of its intellectual property and three studios in a $300M transaction.
The deal: The acquisition came as a surprise to many.
- Embracer Group has entered an agreement to acquire studios Crystal Dynamics, Eidos-Montréal, and Square Enix Montréal.
- The transaction also includes a roster of IPs such as Tomb Raider, Deux Ex, Thief, Legacy Kain, and over 50 additional titles. Square Enix will retain the rights to Just Cause, Life Is Strange, and Outriders.
- The purchase price totals $300M on a cash and debt-free basis and will be paid in full should the deal close between July to September 2022.
- Embracer will take on around 1,100 employees across the three studios and eight locations.
A wider lens: The games industry has been active with acquisitions and investments so far in 2022.
- Zynga was acquired by Take-Two Interactive for $12.7B in January 2022.
- Sony entered a definitive agreement in January 2022 that would see it acquire Halo creator Bungie for $3.6B.
- Sony and KIRKBI, the parent company of The LEGO Group, invested $1B each in Fortnite publisher Epic Games in April 2022.
- Major esports properties ESL, DreamHack, and FACEIT are set to be acquired by Savvy Gaming Group for $1.5B. The prospective buyer is wholly owned by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund.
- Microsoft is in the process of attempting to acquire Activision Blizzard in a deal worth almost $69B. The acquisition was approved by over 98% of the Call of Duty publisher's shareholders in late April.
- It was reported in April 2022 that Ubisoft has been attracting takeover interest from major private equity firms such as Blackstone Inc. (a firm with 106 companies in its portfolio) and KKR & Co. (investor in Epic Games and dozens of non-gaming companies).