Embracer Group is to buy Middle-earth Enterprises, which will give the Swedish conglomerate the rights to JRR Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.
In a press release, Embracer discussed its process of buying Middle-earth Enterprises, although it did not disclose the sum of this deal, citing “commercial reasons” for this decision.
This deal will mean that Embracer will own the rights to motion pictures, video games, board games, merchandising, theme parks and stage productions relating to Tolkien’s works.
On this, Embacer said this deal will open up opportunities to explore “additional movies based on iconic characters such as Gandalf, Aragorn, Gollum, Galadriel, Eowyn and other characters from the literary works of JRR Tolkien, and continue to provide new opportunities for fans to explore this fictive world through merchandising and other experiences.”
When the ink is dry, Embracer states Middle-earth Enterprises will be a part of the “newly founded operative group Embracer Freemode”.
The company will then continue to operate independently “under the existing Middle-earth Enterprises leadership team”.
In addition to this acquisition, today also sees Embracer acquiring other studios, including its first Japanese studio in Masahiro Yuge’s Tatsujin, which owns the entire Toaplan library.
Embracer is also adding Tripwire Interactive (whose games include shark survival game Maneater and first-person shooter Killing Floor), Limited Run Games, Tuxedo Labs and Singtrix to its acquisition spree.
In addition to this, the company has also acquired another undisclosed studio. This “PC/console gaming” studio is remaining a mystery for now, with the company once more citing this is for commercial purposes.
On this, Embracer said: “The purchase price for this un-disclosed acquisition is in the range of being among either third or fourth largest of the transactions.”
Earlier this year, Embracer also entered into a deal with Square Enix, the result of which will see the company owning Crystal Dynamics, Eidos Montreal and Square Enix Montreal, as well as IPs including Tomb Raider, Deus Ex, Thief and Legacy of Kain when the deal is finalised (which is set to be this September).
Embracer has promised “multiple” announcements at Gamescom – perhaps we’ll hear more about some of these projects then.