The deal will give the Sony games division access to Bungie’s “world-class approach to live game services and technology expertise,” Sony said. Bungie will continue to operate independently as a subsidiary of Sony Interactive Entertainment.
Based, which has more than 900 employees, is focused on the long-term development of Destiny 2, expanding the Destiny universe, and creating new worlds in future intellectual property. The Halo franchise is currently managed and developed by Microsoft-owned 343 Industries, as part of Xbox Game Studios. A long-gestating TV series based on Halo is set to premiere on Paramount Plus in March.
Post-acquisition, Bungie will be run by its board of directors chaired by CEO Pete Parsons and Bungie’s current management team. The transaction is subject to certain closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.
Bungie “will remain independent and multiplatform, will enjoy creative freedom, and their track record in developing massively successful franchises in the sci-fi shooter genre will be highly complementary to SIE’s own IP portfolio,” Sony Interactive Entertainment president/CEO Jim Ryan wrote in a blog post about the pact.
News of Sony’s bid for Bungie comes two weeks after Microsoft unveiled a blockbuster $68.7 deal to buy for Activision Blizzard. And earlier this month, Take-Two Interactive announced that it would acquire Zynga for $12.7 billion.
“Bungie has created and continues to evolve some of the world’s most beloved videogame franchises and, by aligning its values with people’s desire to share gameplay experiences, they bring together millions of people around the world,” Kenichiro Yoshida, chairman, president and CEO, Sony Group Corp., said in a statement.
Sony Interactive Entertainment has had a “strong partnership” with Bungie since the inception of the Destiny in 2014, according Ryan. “This is an important step in our strategy to expand the reach of PlayStation to a much wider audience,” he said in a statement. “We understand how vital Bungie’s community is to the studio and look forward to supporting them as they remain independent and continue to grow.”
Bungie’s Parsons commented, “In SIE, we have found a partner that fully supports us and wants to accelerate our vision of creating meaningful entertainment experiences that span generations, all while valuing the creative independence that is the heartbeat of Bungie. We will continue pursuing our vision of one, unified Bungie community, building games that value our community and meet them wherever and however they choose to play.”