South Korean developer Pearl Abyss has announced the acquisition of Eve Online studio CCP Games for $425m.
The announcement highlights that CCP Games will remain independent and keep its studios in Reykjavik, London and Shanghai.
Pearl Abyss is known for MMORPG Black Desert Online, which launched in Korea in 2014. It then released in North America and Europe in 2016 and since then expanded to many more territories. The title reached 3m players in the west in March 2018.
CCP Games CEO Hilmar Veigar Pétursson commented: “I have been seriously impressed with what Pearl Abyss has achieved ever since I first visited their website for Black Desert Online and subsequently became an avid player of the game. Pearl Abyss is a fast-growing company with lots to offer in terms of technology, capability and vision. I believe our two companies have a lot to learn from each other. We are very excited to join forces with them and achieve great new heights for our companies, our games and – above all – our players.”
Novator Partners’ Birgir Már Ragnarsson (also CCP chairman) added: “As lead investor in CCP for over 13 years alongside General Catalyst and NEA, we’ve seen CCP go from being a few dozen people strong to employing hundreds all over the world, with an ever-increasing customer base and multiple titles. CEO Hilmar V. Pétursson and his dedicated team have built a company that Novator and its partners are proud to hand over to Pearl Abyss and we wish them the best of luck in their future ventures.”
Pearl Abyss CEO Robin Jung said: “We are thrilled to have CCP Games join our team as Black Desert Online continues to branch out globally. CCP is a seasoned publisher with over 15 years of digital distribution experience and know-how. They have done an incredible job of engaging and maintaining their playerbase, which we aim to learn from and hope to integrate natively into Pearl Abyss’ general practices across all our games. I am confident CCP’s reputable IP and expertise in global publishing will help reaffirm our company’s dedication to developing and servicing the world’s best MMORPGs.”
CCP Games opened a London studio in 2016. Since then, the developer had been one of the earliest supporters of VR but had to quit the sector in October 2017 due to limited success, shutting down its Atlanta office in the process. Its Newcastle studio was then acquired by Sumo Digital in early 2018. More recently, CCP Games announced a deal with Chinese company NetEase, which will see the latter taking over publishing duties of EVE Online in the country.