Weekly News Digest #44
# of announced deals
announced deals’ size
# of closed deals
We are working on our Q1-Q3’23 Global Gaming Deals Activity Report, so this digest has no featured news. However, you can still find all last week’s deals in the “Notable Transactions” section below. Please follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Telegram to avoid missing the Report.
MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS
US-based indie games publisher Devolver Digital (LON: DEVO) has acquired US-based game developer System Era Softworks for up to $40m, including an initial payment of $22m, comprising $20m in cash upon closing and $2m in shares a year later. The agreement also includes a $10m deferred consideration and up to $8m potential earn-out, payable in cash and shares. System Era is primarily known for its PC & Console online sandbox adventure title, Astroneer. Devolver aims to expand its portfolio by leveraging System Era’s expertise in expandable game-style development, live operations technology, and existing intellectual property.
US-based gaming company Atari (ENXTPA: ATA) is set to acquire US-based retro games developer Digital Eclipse in a $20m deal. The acquisition consists of an initial payment of $6.5m, including $4m paid in cash and $2.5m paid in newly issued ordinary shares. Digital Eclipse, known for projects like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection, will retain the freedom to collaborate on non-Atari ventures. The developer plans to continue its Gold Master Series project, as well as work on unannounced projects, aiming to leverage Atari’s ownership to enhance their ongoing Wizardry remaster.
Saudi Arabia-based NEOM Company has announced a $50m investment in Hong Kong-based web3 gaming company Animoca Brands. The investment will support the development of Animoca Brands’ web3 ecosystem and promote technology advancements in Riyadh and the broader NEOM region. NEOM aims to create a web3 hub within its innovative city project titled The Line.
US-based games publisher Midwest Games has raised $3m in a Seed funding round led by TitletownTech, with participation from Tundra Angels, Brightstar Wisconsin, Wisconsin Investment Partners, and other investors. The funding will expand the company’s business operations and staff. Midwest Games aims to bridge the gap and create opportunities for underserved communities in the games industry. The studio’s first published title will be beat ‘em up co-op Ra Ra Boom by Gylee Games, planned to be released in 2024.
India-based mobile games developer Funstop Games has raised $1.5m in a Seed funding round from InfoEdge Ventures. The company is primarily known for titles like Pitstop Manager and Airport Rush 3D. Founded in 2020, Funstop Games has achieved over 50 million downloads. The funding will enhance Funstop’s game development and ad tech capabilities, strengthening its portfolio.
UK-based esports organization Guild Esports (LON: GILD) has announced an up to ~$1.2m (£1m) investment deal from an undisclosed esports and media brand. The investment aims to support Guild Esports’ expansion into the MENA region, which is anticipated to have 88 million gamers by 2026. The deal involves two unconditional payments of ~$0.3m (£0.25m), with an additional ~$6.2m (£0.5m) conditional on a broader commercial agreement between the parties. Guild Esports plans to use the funding for further enhancement of its business operations.
US-based casual games hub Playbite has raised $1m in a Seed funding round led by Grishin Robotics, with participation from M25, Tundra Ventures, Capitalize VC, and Magic Fund. The sum will expand the company’s platform, reach a wider audience, and enhance the hub, providing users with several games and opportunities to win prizes like gift cards and consoles. The eponymous platform is available on the App Store, Google Play, and Web and offers 42 single and multiplayer games, monetized through ads, in-app purchases, and a subscription service.
UK-based web3 mobile football game developer Formation Games has raised an undisclosed sum in a funding round from YouTube star Manny Brown. Brown, owner of Under The Radar FC, will also collaborate on a documentary providing insights into football club ownership. Formation Games will leverage Brown’s industry expertise for its upcoming mobile football title CLUB, where Club Owners make critical decisions on kit, stadium, sponsors, and player signings based on real-world data. CLUB, set for a 2024 release, offers a social experience on mobile devices, combining football culture with strategy gameplay.