Borderlands studio Gearbox sold to Take-Two in $460 million USD deal

Embracer splits with another subsidiary
Gearbox

Update (June 12, 2024): Embracer announced that its divestment of Gearbox Entertainment to Take-Two Interactive has officially closed without any issues:

"All conditions for the transaction have now been fulfilled, and the transaction has been closed today," the company stated.


Original: Embracer Group has sold parts of Gearbox Entertainment to Take-Two Interactive in yet another large divestment. According to Embracer, Take-Two is paying $460 million USD to acquire three studios under Gearbox as well as several IPs owned by the publisher.

Gearbox Software in Texas, Gearbox Montréal, and Gearbox Quebec will all go to Take-Two. As a bridal gift they’ll bring the rights to the Borderlands, Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, Homeworld, Risk of Rain, Brothers in Arms, and Duke Nukem franchises.

Embracer keeps Gearbox Publishing located in San Francisco, which will be renamed as part of the deal, Cryptic Studios including its active MMOs Neverwinter Online and Star Trek Online, Lost Boys Interactive, and Captured Dimensions. All of them will be more closely integrated into the wider Embracer framework in the future – similarly to the studios the company retained after its divestment of Saber Interactive.

“Through the transaction, we lower business risk and improve profitability as we transition to becoming a leaner and more focused company,” explained Embracer CEO Lars Wingefors. “After evaluating several options for Gearbox, I am happy that we have reached a solution that is in the best interest of all stakeholders. Randy and the team have been great team members throughout the past years, and I would like to thank them all for that. As one of the world’s greatest games developers, I am confident that Gearbox will continue to innovate and thrive in their new home within Take-Two.”

Founder and CEO of Gearbox, Randy Pitchford, called the situation the “best possible scenario and an obvious net positive arrangement for Embracer Group, for Take-Two and, of course, for Gearbox Entertainment.”

“I want to personally assure fans of our games that this arrangement will ensure that the experiences we have in development at Gearbox will be the best they can possibly be,” he added.

This deal is expected to be closed by June 2024, subject to regulatory approval.

Embracer is currently undergoing a massive cost-cutting program, which already led to several studios under its umbrella being shut down or experiencing layoffs – more spending cuts as well as divestments are expected to follow throughout the year.


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Marco Wutz

MARCO WUTZ

Marco Wutz is a writer from Parkstetten, Germany. He has a degree in Ancient History and a particular love for real-time and turn-based strategy games like StarCraft, Age of Empires, Total War, Age of Wonders, Crusader Kings, and Civilization as well as a soft spot for Genshin Impact and Honkai: Star Rail. He began covering StarCraft 2 as a writer in 2011 for the largest German community around the game and hosted a live tournament on a stage at gamescom 2014 before he went on to work for Bonjwa, one of the country's biggest Twitch channels. He branched out to write in English in 2015 by joining tl.net, the global center of the StarCraft scene run by Team Liquid, which was nominated as the Best Coverage Website of the Year at the Esports Industry Awards in 2017. He worked as a translator on The Crusader Stands Watch, a biography in memory of Dennis "INTERNETHULK" Hawelka, and provided live coverage of many StarCraft 2 events on the social channels of tl.net as well as DreamHack, the world's largest gaming festival. From there, he transitioned into writing about the games industry in general after his graduation, joining GLHF, a content agency specializing in video games coverage for media partners across the globe, in 2021. He has also written for NGL.ONE, kicker, ComputerBild, USA Today's ForTheWin, The Sun, Men's Journal, and Parade. Email: marco.wutz@glhf.gg