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Embracer Buys Dark Horse After Mega Deal to Buy Asmodee

Dark Horse Comics

Embracer Group is on a buying spree to end the year. Just lack week, the video game behemoth announced the intended acquisition of Asmodee, the board game publisher, for €2.75 billion (about $3.1 billion in US dollars). Now, the conglomerate is purchasing Dark Horse Media, making it the tenth operative group of the Embracer group. Dark Horse founder and CEO Mike Richardson will continue to lead the company with existing management.

According to the announcement, Dark Horse “owns or controls” more than 300 intellectual properties. It strengthens Embracer Group’s content development in comic publishing and film and tv production. Asmodee in the recent year has expanded its non-game publishing (books, art books) and also recently announced moves to bring its properties to film and television.

In the acquisition, Embracer Group gains Dark Horse Comics, Dark Horse Entertainment (film and television), and Things from Another World (retail with three locations and e-commerce). In the Asmodee acquisition, it was revealed that Asmodee owned two stores including the popular Miniature Market which it bought in 2021. The purchase of Asmodee and Dark Horse quickly expands Embracer’s retail operations with both physical and e-commerce options as well as its reach into television and film. The firm is clearly looking at how to expand its existing properties beyond their initial silos of release.

In the announcement, Embracer specifically mentioned the “untapped potential in creating games based on Dark Horse IP”. Embracer Group is the parent company of 86 video game development studios representing over 250 IPs in over 40 countries. Studios include THQ Nordic, Gearbox Entertainment, and others with properties such as Saints Row, Dead Island, Darksiders, Timesplitters, World War Z, and Borderlands.

Darksiders and Dead Island have seen comics based on them released by Dark Horse while Borderlands has had comic tie-ins published by IDW Publishing.

Between these two purchases, Embracer quickly becomes an IP powerhouse with the abilitiy to release concepts across video games, tabletop games, comics, movies, and television.

The amount of the purchase has not been revealed “due to commercial reasons” but Embracer will purchase 80 percent of the shares of Dark Horse from a seller based in Hong Kong and the remaining 20 percent of the shares from CEO Mike Richardson and COO Neil Hankerson. The transaction is expected to be completed in early 2022.