Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay, Payday 2, and Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons studio Starbreeze has acquired a 90.5 percent stake in Bengaluru-based Dhruva Interactive for $8.5 million.
Founded in 1997, Dhruva has provided art production services to the global games industry. These include high-profile AAA titles such as Halo 5, Forza Horizon 3, the recently revealed Days Gone, Sea of Thieves, and Quantum Break. It has also assisted in production for Starbreeze’s own Payday 2. Post-acquisition Dhruva will retain its own brand and continue creating art assets for other game studios.
The acquisition allows Starbreeze obtain art production needed for the likes of such as Overkill’s The Walking Dead and Nozon’s VFX production along with allowing the company to provide full end-to-end services to its publishing partners.
“Bold plans need the right partners and Content is King. We have worked with Dhruva Interactive for several years and know them well. I am confident that bringing Dhruva into the Starbreeze family will strengthen Starbreeze as a global entertainment company,” said Starbreeze CEO Bo Andersson-Klint. “Dhruva will continue to operate independently under its own brand and run business as usual with existing partners, while greatly contributing to Starbreeze pipeline and adding pronounced value to our publishing services and VR ecosystem.”
“Starbreeze has been a great client, and over time we realized that Starbreeze is exactly the kind of company that we’d like to evolve with. They have strong games, an awesome vision for VR, similar culture and a skilled management team”, said Dhruva CEO and Founder Rajesh Rao. “Our talent art teams contribute to the some of the biggest and most visually stunning games in the industry today. As part of the Starbreeze family, we will be able to add cutting edge VR content to our repertoire as well. It’s an extremely exciting time.”
According to Starbreeze’s website, the deal contains an earn-out agreement of no more than $800,000 over the next four years. In the financial year ending March 2016 Dhruva Interactive’s revenues amounted to $4.6 million.
Dhruva has been acquired for $7 million in cash and $1.5 million in Starbreeze B-shares, valued at the share price and exchange rate per closing date of the transaction.
The deal is expected to close at the end of the first quarter 2017, subject to approval processes for foreign investors in India.