Embracer divests Saber Interactive for $247M, pulls out of Russia

Embracer Group announced today that it has sold Saber Interactive for $247 million to Beacon Interactive. Reports of the deal going through first surfaced several weeks ago, and now Embracer has disclosed the details of the split. Several of the studios for which Saber is parent will go to Beacon as well. Beacon is a company controlled by Saber’s co-founder, Matthew Karch. In addition, Embracer has announced it’s ceasing all operations in Russia.

As part of the sale, Saber will keep several of the studios nested under it, including 3D Realms, Nimble Giant, New World Interactive, Sandbox Strategies, Mad Head Games, Slipgate, Fractured Byte, Digic and all Saber-branded studios. Embracer plans to keep Aspyr, Beamdog, Tripwire, Tuxedo Labs, 4A Games, 34 Big Things, Demiurge, Zen Studios, Snapshot and Shiver. It’s worth noting the deal includes the option for Beacon to purchase 4A Games and Zen Studios for an undisclosed sum.

A February report from Bloomberg estimated the sale price of Saber to be up to $500 million. Embracer bought Saber in 2020 for $525 million, and nested several studios it later acquired under Saber’s banner. Lars Wingefors, Embracer’s CEO, said in a statement, “I am pleased that we have found a win-win solution for Embracer and the parts of Saber that now will leave us. This transaction puts both companies in a stronger position to thrive going forward.”

According to the announcement, Embracer retains the rights to Killing Floor 3, Teardown, several unannounced games from its retained studios, and the “full upcoming pipeline and back catalog from Zen Studios, Aspyr and Tripwire.” Saber and Beacon get 38 in-development game projects in the sale, and though it didn’t specify which projects those are, the Knight of the Old Republic remake might be among them.

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Embracer Group has laid off almost 1,400 people in the last year as part of its restructuring plan. It’s also canceled 29 game projects. Karch said in a statement, “This divestment leaves both parties in much better positions to grow our respective businesses. I will continue to remain a large, long-term shareholder of Embracer and we will remain partners on several ongoing and future projects. This transaction also safeguards the livelihoods of hundreds of professionals, many of whom I have worked with for over two decades.”

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