Chinese gaming giant Tencent has continued its goal of global gaming domination by buying up British game creators Sumo Group. Best known for their main studio Sumo Digital (Team Sonic Racing, Crackdown 3, Sackboy: A Big Adventure), the group also has several other development studios in its stable, most notably The Chinese Room (Dear Esther, Everybody Gone to the Rapture).
The deal, while not final, offers $1.27 Billion for Sumo Group as Tencent would offer a 43% premium over the stock's trading price. This would be an expansion of them already owning over 8% of the group as the second-largest shareholder. The Sumo Board has said that it intends to unanimously recommend the deal to shareholders, with executive Carl Carvers saying,
"Tencent has a strong track record for backing management teams and their existing strategies. Alongside the acceleration of Own-IP work, Tencent has demonstrated its commitment to backing our client work and has stated its intention to ensure that we have the necessary investment to continue focusing on work with our key strategic partners on turn-key and co-development projects."
Shareholders would need to vote for the deal for it to be finalized, and it would need to pass regulatory scrutiny in both the UK and China. As the largest foreign purchase of a gaming company in the UK (narrowly besting EA's acquisition of Codemasters), it should pass on that side, but recently Chinese authorities have been stricter, and blocked Tencent from merging the two largest video game streaming platforms in China. This seems unlikely to provoke the same anti-trust concerns, but it follows a pattern of the Chinese government being stricter with their largest tech corporations recently.
What studios does Tencent acquire in Sumo Purchase?
While there are no wrestlers, there are a number of developers here. Sumo Group employed over 1200 people, and recently expanded into Canada. Here is a list of the studios and publishers the group has:
- Sumo Digital
- Sumo Lemington
- Sumo Newcastle
- Sumo Nottingham
- Sumo Pune
- Sumo Sheffield
- Sumo Warrington
- The Chinese Room
- PixelAnt Games
- Pipeworks Studios
- Timbre Games (a newly founded subsidiary in Canada)
- Atomhawk Canada
- Atomhawk United Kingdom
- Secret Mode (publisher)
What ongoing games would Tencent acquire in the Purchase?
While there are a lot of titles in the works form the studios, the only prominent ongoing game right now that would be covered by this purchase is Hood: Outlaws and Legends.
What do you think of Tencent acquiring Sumo Group? Let us know in the comments below.