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SEGA buys Angry Birds Maker for $775 million



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Update: And just like that, SEGA bought Rovio, the mobile developer behind Angry Birds. The final bid is slightly less than originally reported: $775 million. Considering the Finnish firm’s turnover totals $300 million a year, the deal seems like a pinch for the Sonic the Hedgehog publisher.

As we’re all aware by now, clearing these acquisitions takes a while, and SEGA doesn’t expect the deal to be officially finalized until the end of September. Unlike some other takeovers in the industry, however, this one is unlikely to be subject to much scrutiny.

It seems that the Japanese company wants to use Rovio’s expertise to help expand its footprint in the smartphone space: “Through the acquisition, the company aims to leverage Rovio’s live-powered mobile game development capabilities and mobile game operations. Expertise is to be enhanced. The development of mobile-friendly and multi-platform-enabled versions of SEGA’s existing game IPs, thereby strengthening and further accelerating the global expansion of SEGA’s game portfolio.”

Apparently this is the same language that Sony used when they bought Bungie, so it seems to be a common theme among major publishers right now.

Original article: Forget Angry Birds, because there might be some Angry Hedgehogs on the horizon – or something. Accordingly The Wall Street Journal, publishing giant and former platform holder SEGA is on the brink of acquiring Angry Birds creator Rovio for $1 billion. The era of industry consolidation continues…

According to “people familiar with the matter,” Sonic the Hedgehog producers can do Seal the deal early next week, assuming negotiations don’t break down between now and then. Obviously the deal will then be subject to approval, but should not face too much scrutiny.

It’s worth noting that SEGA itself merged with slot-machine company Sammy in 2004, and produces all kinds of entertainment products, including arcade games and more. Bringing the Angry Birds brand home, which is still popular among certain demographics, then makes some sense.

Based in Finland, Rovio played a major role in the smartphone gaming boom back in 2009 — but hasn’t really been able to achieve the same kind of success since going public in 2017. Angry Birds spawned a couple of movies and several spin-offs, but it wasn’t the Titan it once was.

Earlier in the year, the mobile developer was in talks with Israeli publisher Playtica to sell for $800 million, but the deal fell through. It looks like SEGA has stepped in with an improved offering, though we’ll still have to wait for the ink to dry next week.


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