Take-Two Acquiring ‘Project Cars’ Publisher Codemasters For $1 Billion

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Take-Two Interactive has reached an agreement to purchase UK-based publisher Codemasters. With an implied equity value at approximately $994M, the deal will bring the racing game publisher into Take-Two's portfolio for more projected profits in the coming years. Codemasters publishes the F1, Dirt, and Project Cars series', and will now work under Take-Two and its 2K label while retaining the CEO and CFO.

In a statement, Strauss Zelnick, CEO of Take-Two, explained that this acquisition of Codemasters was part of a vision to "deliver the highest quality entertainment experiences and aim to be the most innovative, creative and efficient company in our industry." He also stated that "Codemasters has a renowned history of creating some of our industry's most beloved and commercially successful racing franchises, and we believe that their offerings will be highly complementary to our sports portfolio and enhance further our organization's long-term growth."
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Strauss Zelnick

Between the two companies, Take-Two believes that the "highly complementary" fit will benefit Codemasters. The deal explains that "by leveraging Take-Two's global distribution and marketing infrastructure, together with Take-Two's core operating expertise in live operations, analytics, product development, and brand and performance marketing." Gerhard Florin, Codemasters Chairman, echoed similar sentiments, stating that "With a leading position in sports gaming, the Board of Codemasters firmly believes the Company will benefit from Take-Two's broad capabilities which will help propel the long-term success of Codemasters."

In the future, there could be concerns for customers and fans of Codemasters' products. Previously, Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick has tried to justify and push for price hikes of 2K series games such as NBA 2K21. Once Codemasters joins the Take-Two portfolio, Codemasters games could increase their game prices to "highly complement" 2K games price increases. Also, one could hope that the Codemasters games will not get micro-transactions like other 2K and Take-Two games we have seen in the past. 

This acquisition could change Codemasters releases in the future, making them more like 2K Games.  On the other side of the coin, the acquisition could make Codemasters incredibly profitable and they would not have to change anything. Overall, it remains to be seen how or if Codemasters will control pricing and sales of their games, so we will have to wait and see how this all shakes out. It has been a busy year for large purchases in the games industry, like the Microsoft ZeniMax acquisition, so let us know in the comments what you think of all these shakeups and consolidations.