Update by Ian Miles Cheong: We have a confirmed report from an inside source close to Desura that Bad Juju, the parent company of Desura, faced financial difficulties after acquiring Desura from Linden Lab. Bad Juju's financial troubles began after they acquired Desura.
When Linden Lab acquired the company prior, they saw that Desura was not profitable immediately. Bad Juju could neither handle the cost of operations nor the staff, and it bankrupted the company.
Despite running on a skeleton crew, Desura's staff as well as the costs to download games and files off its service far outweighed any profits the company could make.
Our source emphasizes that Bad Juju went bankrupt explicitly because they bought Desura, and that the company's troubles have nothing to do with the hospitalization of Desura's CEO.
Original post follows:
Desura, and sister company Indie Royale, may be calling it quits as parent company Bad Juju has filed bankruptcy.
Desura is a digital distribution platform, competing in the same space as Steam and GOG. Most Desura games are DRM-free, although they are actually DRM neutral and so are willing to sell Steam keys. While a distant third in the market, Desura has acquired a small library of key indie developers, iuncluding Double Fine, Frozenbyte, Runesoft, and Running with Scissors.
Indie Royale was their answer to Humble Bundle, BundleStars, etc., allowing you to buy bundles as well as individual games for cheap.
While folks will immediately remember Desura’s troubles paying developers since two weeks ago, these issues may be traceable as far back as November 2014. Linden Lab, the startup that owns Second Life, purchased the service in 2013, and given the size and profitability of Linden Lab, this was seen as a good sign for the company. The subsequent sale to Bad Juju, then, could have been an early sign the company’s affairs were not in order.
Following growing complaints from developers that they were unpaid by Desura for an extended period of time, they had explained that Bad Juju’s CEO Tony Novak, who solely handled payments, was hospitalized and could not process this business in the interim. Desura also admitted to other issues that sprung up since the acquisition, along with a recent office relocation.
Now, we know from IndieRoyale employee Grame Boxall that the company’s future, as well as his job, really in question for this whole time. Finally, he pointed out that you can Google Bad Juju’s filing for bankruptcy.
If you Google, Bad Juju bankruptcy, you find some very unfortunate news.
— Graeme Boxall (@uncomplex) June 5, 2015
In fact, bankruptcy database inforuptcy has a listing for that filing here.
Did you buy games on Desura or Indie Royale? Do you happen to be one of the developers they haven’t paid yet? If you would like to share your story with us, please contact me at [email protected].