Publisher Codemasters has acquired the developers Slightly Mad Studios.
According to a short announcement by the company on their official blog, the company is excited about the acquisition because of the experience Slightly Mad Studios brings in from the realm of simulation racing, being primarily responsible for the Project CARS series.
The two studios combined have nearly thirty years of experience in the racing genre. Not only is Project CARS the flagship title for Slightly Mad Studios, but they have also worked on several Need for Speed games for Electronic Arts and Test Drive: Ferrari Racing Legends. Codemasters is well known for the GRID series, but is also responsible for DiRT and the Formula One Racing franchises as well.
The acquisition combines all the franchises under one roof.
“Our combined racing games portfolio is the envy of the industry and this new partnership will enable us to learn from each other, share resources and take advantage of emerging platforms and technology,” stated Ian Bell, Founder and Chief Executive at Slightly Mad Studios.
Earlier this year, Slightly Mad Studios was in negotiations with Modern Pick Entertainment to acquire a "substantial stake" in the developer. It is currently unknown if Modern Pick Entertainment is involved with Slightly Mad at all, or if that deal fell through before Codemasters stepped in.
It was reported by Gameindustry.Biz that Codemasters acquired Slightly Mad for about £23.3 million ($30 million) outright, with an earnout clause based on Slightly Mad Studios EBITDA over the next three years. It is estimated that the earnout clause can earn Codemasters an estimated total of £52.6 million ($67.9 million).
"We are delighted to bring such an incredible racing game developer to the Codemasters family, and this unequivocally establishes us as a global powerhouse in the development of racing titles,” said Frank Sagnier, Chief Executive Officer at Codemasters. “We share the same passion and vision and our new partnership will accelerate our growth. With more streaming services coming to market and the next generation of games consoles due in 2020, this is the perfect time for Codemasters to take its next step.”
Overall, everyone is hoping this works out better than when Codemasters hired the developers of Evolution Studios, who had worked on Driveclub, and then did OnRush for Codemasters. Sadly, the financial disappointment of that title caused Codemasters to layoff most of the studio.
What are your thoughts on this deal? Do you think this will work out better then when the Evolution Studios team went to Codemasters? Leave your comments below.