The Embracer group continues its great career to acquire studios and now has big ambitions in game production.
Do you know Embracer Group? This European group is doing its best not to appear on the covers of games and yet it is already one of the largest publishers in the world alongside Activision, Electronic Arts and Ubisoft. In a few short years, it has become known primarily for its many small and medium studio acquisitions, but also some big shots like Gearbox, the developers of Borderlands. Embracer also owns numerous video game licenses: Saint’s Row, Metro, Dead Island, TimeSplitters, Satisfactory, or even Darksiders, to name a few.
Today the Embracer group represents no less than 77 in-house studios and 8,000 employees in 45 different countries. And the group has already warned: it is not going to stop there.
35 buybacks are already planned in 12 months
In its financial report for the second quarter of fiscal 2021, the Embracer group is quite clear.
During the last 12 months, we have completed 37 acquisitions and we expect to complete a similar number of transactions over the next 12 months. We currently have a wide range of ongoing processes and dialogues, including a good number of signed exclusive contracts.
The quote is quite explicit, Embracer Group wants to achieve the same number of study purchases during the next 12 months as in the last 12, or around 37 studies to buy. If the company achieves its goal, it could exceed 100 internal studies. Despite this large number of studies, we would still be far from Ubisoft’s mass of employees, which reaches 19,000 workers worldwide.
At least 25 AAA games by 2026
Not all of these studios will be playing with their thumbs. While most of Embracer Group’s production will continue to be geared toward the “indie” or AA caliber, the firm also wants to increase its AAA box office hit rate. According to the financial report, a total of 25 AAA games are planned on the company’s schedule for March 2026. That works out to roughly six games per year for four years anyway.
On the other hand, the usual postponements of departures will have to be taken into account. Embracer also specifies that an unannounced AAA game has had its release changed, as well as the recently unveiled Saints Row. The latter was out in February 2022 and is now scheduled for August 23, 2022.
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