The Embracer Group has done an incredible deal with Square Enix by the looks of things. The Swedish video game publisher group, which already owns THQ Nordic, Aspyr Media and Gearbox, amongst others, has agreed to purchase Eidos-Montréal, Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix Montreal from Square Enix, for a nifty $300 million. The deal also includes the acquisition of a number of notable IPs, including Tomb Raider, Deus Ex, Thief and Legacy of Kain, to name a few.
In addition, the “agreement to acquire” will include more than 50 games from Square Enix’s back catalogue, according to the official press release from Embracer Group this morning. The decision to sell off a major chunk of its Western development studios now is an interesting one from Square Enix. Considering that the next Tomb Raider game was only recently announced by Crystal Dynamics, it’s definitely a choice move to sell off such an iconic IP (alongside notable others) and these studios for what amounts to a somewhat bargain price. Especially when you consider what Embracer spent on acquiring Gearbox ($1.3 billion) in March last year.
The rationale from Square Enix is intriguing, as they’ve put the sale down in part to the company’s desire to move further into blockchain technology. Their own press release does add, however, that the company will retain control and continue to publish other Square Enix IPs, such as Life Is Strange, Just Cause and Outriders.
The Transaction will assist the Company in adapting to the changes underway in the globalSquare Enix
business environment by establishing a more efficient allocation of resources, which will enhance
corporate value by accelerating growth in the Company’s core businesses in the digital
entertainment domain. In addition, the Transaction enables the launch of new businesses by
moving forward with investments in fields including blockchain, AI, and the cloud.
As far as Embracer are concerned though, the future of the game franchises they’re planning to acquire is still bright. “The acquisition brings a compelling pipeline of new installments from beloved franchises and original IPs, including a new Tomb Raider game,” the official statement explains, before going on further to elaborate on the potential for growth it sees by acquiring both the IPs and their respective studios from Square Enix.
Embracer has been particularly impressed by the studios’ rich portfolio of original IP, housing brands with proven global potential such as Tomb Raider and Deus Ex, as well as demonstrating the ability to create AAA games with large and growing fan bases. There are compelling opportunities to organically grow the studios to maximize their commercial opportunities.Embracer Group
While it’s clearly an exciting bargain for Embracer, the deal isn’t done just yet. According to the press release, the acquisition is expected to be completed during the second quarter of Embracer’s financial year 22/23 (July-September 2022).