Despite the similarities of both forms of media, the business side of video games and films don't always mix. Today, the Nordic entertainment company Nordisk Film has changed that by acquiring Avalanche Studios. This studio is responsible for the Just Cause series, Mad Max, and is currently developing the upcoming Rage 2 with id Software.
This is the biggest acquisition in Nordisk Film's 111-year history, according to their website. They've had a minority share in Avalanche Studios since April 2017 and were impressed enough to fork over €89 million for the remaining shares. Avalanche Studios, as a whole, is valued at €117 million.
News of the acquisition comes about a week after Avalanche's newest studio. They opened up a new location in Malmö, Sweden, which is about 500 kilometers from their original studio in Stockholm. Avalanche also started a New York City branch in 2011 and that team developed Just Cause 3. About 320 total people work at all of Avalanche Studios and Pim Holfve, CEO of Avalanche Studios, seemed to be excited about the deal.
"We have had a fantastic year with Nordisk Film as part of Avalanche Studios," said Holfve "We’ve grown and matured at a pace which was previously not possible. Even though we’ll continue to operate as an independent studio, Nordisk Film will – with a century of experience from growing creative businesses – provide us with a more solid foundation. I could not be happier to have them on-board."
As the Just Cause series has shown, Avalanche Studios does not like dictatorial forces. Thankfully, Nordisk has promised that the developer's strategy will be "unaltered." They explain that Avalanche will "continue as a creatively independent game studio, developing its own IP’s, as well as catering to third-party publishers and license holders." The studio's official Twitter account even reassured fans that they'll continue their business as normal, which is good for everyone involved.
Nordisk Film has actually been involved with video games before. Since 1995, Nordisk Film Interactive has been the official distributor for PlayStation products in the Nordic region and Baltic countries. They also have a game division focused on investing in Nordic game studios, with the goal of wanting to "fund, and actively support, the creation and long-term development of the most successful global game IPs created in the Nordics."