microsoft, embracer fully acquires former square enix western studios

The acquisition of Square Enix’s western studios and their IP by Embracer Group has been approved, completing the acquisition of the major studios and over 50 IPs including Tomb Raider and Deus Ex.

While the purchase was announced in May, the conditions and approvals for the deal were not finalized until August 26, fully completing the transaction as detailed on Embracer’s official site. The newly acquired studios are set to form Embracer’s 12th operative group led by Phil Rogers. Further details, likely in regards to the name of this operative group and a new name for Square Enix Montreal, are expected at a later date.

The Embracer Group, formerly THQ Nordic AB, is one of the largest companies in the video game industry with over 850 franchises owned or controlled, 120 development studios, and nearly 13,000 employees and contractors spread across its various studios and divisions. The company acquired numerous smaller studios over the years but ramped up over time with acquisitions for companies like Gearbox Entertainment. In May, it purchased all of Square Enix’s western studios, including Crystal Dynamics, Eidos Montreal, and Square Enix Montreal, as well as their IP, for $300 million.

Embracer clearly isn’t done making acquisitions, as the company acquired not only additional game studios such as Bitwave Game and Tripwire Interactive but also the rights to The Lord of the Rings via Middle-earth Enterprises in the months after this Square Enix deal was announced. The gaming industry has seen more acquisitions and consolidation in the last few years than ever before. While most look at Microsoft and Sony’s recent moves in expanding their first-party studios, companies like Embracer and Tencent still dwarf the two console makers by the sheer number of acquisitions.

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