Minneapolis-based Destineer (First To Fight
), a developer and publisher of video games and virtual training simulations, has announced that it has secured an equity investment of $12 million from private-equity firm The Exxel Group.
The company has announced that it plans to use the investment to help fund development of a group of unannounced games for video game consoles and PC, as well as expand the company’s distribution and product development in Latin America.
Destineer was created in 2001 by former Bungie executive vice-president Peter Tamte, and is now managed by Mr. Tamte and CEO Paul Rinde, who was formerly senior vice-president at Atari. The company's brands include Destineer, used for the U.S. Marine Corps game and training sim First To Fight
, Bold Games, a PC-based retail label for games including John Deere: American Farmer
and the Unreal Engine-based Red Orchestra
, MacSoft (Mac versions of Halo
and Zoo Tycoon 2
), and Atomic (the developer of First To Fight
and upcoming game/'serious game' hybrid RTS Red Phoenix
The company develops highly realistic virtual training simulations, also known as 'serious games', for government, military, and intelligence organizations around the world under the Destineer Training Systems label, with First To Fight
to be used by the United States Marine Corps for training.
Exxel’s investment is the second equity investment Destineer has secured outside the games industry during the past year. In mid-2005, Destineer also secured an investment from In-Q-Tel, a private venture capital firm funded by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency.
Paul Rinde, Destineer’s CEO, commented of this move: “The venture capitalists of the video game industry have traditionally been the large publishers, because they’re the ones who have funded most game development until now. But, this new trend of private-equity firms investing in the games industry gives creative companies like Destineer much more flexibility to make games the established publishers are less likely to create.”