Electronic Arts today announced that they have acquired Edmonton’s very own BioWare Corp. in a deal that could be worth $860 million USD. More accurately, EA is buying VG Holding, the parent company of both BioWare and Pandemic Studios. From GameSpot:
VG Holding Corp. was formed in late 2005 when esteemed Canadian role-playing game studio BioWare formed the aforementioned “superdeveloper” with Californian shop Pandemic Studios. The union was funded by Elevation Partners, a venture capital firm with rock star Bono on its board, and brokered by then-Elevation board member John Riccitiello, who became BioWare/Pandemic’s CEO.
A number of articles today have mentioned the fact that John Riccitiello left Elevation in February to become the CEO of Electronic Arts. So essentially, he has purchased BioWare and Pandemic twice. He must really like their games!
This is a great move for Electronic Arts. I’m sure fans of both BioWare’s and Pandemic’s games will have some reservations about the deal though. Will EA cause the studios to lose their mojo? I guess we’ll find out. Both companies will become part of the EA Games division, but Greg Zeschuk and Ray Muzyka will continue to run BioWare, and Andrew Goldman, Josh Resnick, and Greg Borrud will stay in charge of Pandemic, according to GameSpot. At least for the time being.