Embracer Group has announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Middle-earth Enterprises, a division of The Saul Zaentz Company, which controls the IP rights of The Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, including the worldwide rights to ‘motion pictures, video games, board games, merchandising, theme parks and stage productions’ relating to the series as well as ‘matching rights in other Middle-earth-related literary works authorised by the Tolkien Estate and HarperCollins.’
‘I am truly excited to have The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, one of the world’s most epic fantasy franchises join the Embracer family, opening up more transmedia opportunities including synergies across our global group,’ Lars Wingefors, Founder and Group CEO Embracer Group said in a press release.
‘We at the Zaentz Company have had the honor over the past half century of stewarding the Tolkien rights so that Lord of the Rings and Hobbit fans worldwide could enjoy award winning epic films, challenging video games, first rate theatre and merchandise of every variety. We could not be more thrilled that it is Embracer now taking up the responsibility and we are confident their group will take it to new heights and dimensions while maintaining homage to the spirit of these great literary works,’ Marty Glick, COO of The Saul Zaentz Company said.
At this stage, it’s currently unknown what this acquisition means for the many video game and TV properties currently being developed alongside Middle-earth Enterprises.
Specifically mentioned in the press release were future opportunities for Embracer Group to develop new works that will explore the world of Middle-earth in greater depth. Additional movies that explore characters like Gandalf, Aragorn, Gollum, Galadriel and Eowyn were cited as points of interest, with plenty of enthusiasm for expanding the wider world of Tolkien.
Embracer Group and The Saul Zaentz Company did not disclose the purchase price due to ‘commercial reasons.’
In addition to this major deal, Embracer Group has also simultaneously announced a number of other deals – including the acquisition of Tuxedo Labs, which is most known for its work on PC game Teardown. It has also announced it has entered into agreements to purchase Limited Run Games, purveyors of physical and collectable gaming goods, Tripwire Interactive, known for creating the Killing Floor and Chivalry series, and Singtrix, a company known for its karaoke machines.
Additionally, Embracer Group also signalled that it has entered an agreement to acquire another company ‘within PC/Console gaming that, for commercial reasons, is not disclosed today’.
More news on Embracer Group’s continued acquisition spree as we get it.