One of the largest game development studios in Texas, Borderlands developer Gearbox Entertainment is now an official subsidiary of the Embracer Group. The previously announced sale, which is valued at up to $ 1.3 billion, has been officially closed, the two companies said in a press release on Tuesday.
Gearbox is just the latest high-profile studio Embracer has acquired in recent years, joining Valheim publisher Coffee Stain and Saints Row Deep Silver studio, among others. Embracer also owns THQ Nordic. In total, Embracer now reports having 63 in-house game development studios with more than 7,000 employees worldwide in 40 countries.
In the press release, Embracer said that Gearbox is now better prepared for “rapid growth” in its game development divisions and its publishing division.
“Our team is incredibly excited about the opportunity we have now,” said Gearbox CEO and Founder Randy Pitchford. “Far from riding off into the sunset, we are now in a position to launch new intellectual property, do more with our existing brands, grow our base of incredibly talented team members, and capitalize on new opportunities in our mission to entertain the world. . “
Gearbox has 550 employees in its Frisco, Texas and Quebec offices. The studio is best known for the Borderlands series, but has also worked on a host of other big-name franchises such as Half-Life, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater, James Bond, Counter-Strike, and Halo. The company started a publishing division in 2015 and has published titles such as Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition, We Happy Few, and the PS5 launch title Godfall. Not all Gearbox games have been as successful as Borderlands, as their MOBA-style game Battleborn failed to find an audience and their servers have since been shut down. Also, Duke Nukem Forever and Aliens: Colonial Marines weren’t very well received.
Embracer Group CEO Lars Wingefors said in a statement that the Gearbox acquisition is the largest purchase in his company’s history. “We are confident in the long-term future of Gearbox within the Embracer Group.”
The deal is worth up to $ 1.3 billion, but most of it depends on Gearbox reaching certain performance milestones. Gearbox received $ 188 million in cash up front, with further advance payments bringing the company $ 363 million on the first day of the deal. Gearbox can earn many millions more if the company reaches certain milestones, and then another $ 715 million awaiting other key milestones. You can view the full terms of the acquisition in GameSpot’s coverage above.
Embracer’s purchase of Gearbox is just the latest example of high-profile consolidation in the gaming industry. In March, Microsoft completed the acquisition of ZeniMax and its subsidiaries for $ 7.5 billion, including Bethesda. That was the second-largest game acquisition in history, behind only Tencent’s $ 8.6 billion purchase from Clash of Clans developer Supercell years ago.
Next up for Borderlands is Borderlands 3: Director’s Cut, which will be released on April 8 after a delay. A Borderlands movie is also in the works with a renowned talent behind it. Recently, a six-foot-tall Dutch bodybuilder from Marvel’s Black Widow joined the cast.
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