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Borderlands dev Gearbox acquired by Embracer Group in $1.38 billion deal

Borderlands and Brothers in Arms developer Gearbox Entertainment has been acquired by Embracer Group in a deal worth up to $1.38 billion.

Chris Kerr, News Editor

February 3, 2021

2 Min Read

Borderlands and Brothers in Arms developer Gearbox Entertainment has been acquired by Embracer Group in a deal worth up to $1.38 billion. 

The agreement will see Gearbox become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Embracer, which also owns THQ Nordic, Deep Silver, Saber Interactive, and more. 

The Swedish holding company will hand over an initial $363 million comprising cash and newly issued shares, before paying out an additional consideration of up to $1.02 billion over the next six years when certain financial and operational targets are met.

Long-serving Gearbox founder and CEO Randy Pitchford will continue to lead the U.S. company following the purchase, and will also become a "significant shareholder" in Embracer. 

Pitchford explained the deal could serve as a "propellant" for Gearbox, while Embracer chief exec Lars Wingefors said he intends to position the studio for "continued significant growth in the years to come."

As part of that growth plan, Embracer intends to collaborate with Gearbox on all fronts by assisting with development, publishing, and the handling of key franchises, and noted the deal could also pave the way for further mergers and acquisitions in North America. 

"Through the merger, Embracer onboards one of the leading independent companies within the games industry, with proven experience of creating long-lasting franchises and delivering strong original content," said the company. "Gearbox will become the seventh operating group and continue to operate as an independent studio focusing on premium interactive gaming experiences."

Borderlands publisher 2K has also weighed in on the news, explaining the move won't affect its relationship with Gearbox or its role as publisher on the Borderlands franchise and other projects. 

"We look forward to continuing our long-term partnership with this incredibly talented team and delivering many more exciting entertainment experiences to gaming fans around the world," said a company spokesperson.

About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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