Hong Kong-based digital entertainment firm Animoca Brands has acquired 100% interest in Sydney-based indie game developer Blowfish Studios for an upfront consideration of A$9 million ($6.6 million) plus payments of up to A$26 million ($19.2 million) conditional on certain employment and performance targets.
Indie studios are those that are not affiliated with a major publisher.
The first A$9 million payment will include A$4 million in cash and A$5 million in fully-paid ordinary shares of Animoca Brands, the firm said in a statement.
If the Blowfish co-founders continue to stay at the company for two years following the acquisition, up to A$1 million in cash and A$5 million in shares will be paid. The final tranche of up to A$20 million will be then paid based on the achievement of certain profitability targets in 2022 and 2023.
“For all purposes related to this acquisition, shares of Animoca Brands are priced at A$1.1 each,” the Hong Kong-based firm said.
Blowfish is the developer and publisher of 33 games including Siegecraft, Qbism, Storm Boy, and the upcoming Winter Ember, among others. The games are played by over 2.5 million people.
Founded in 2010, Blowfish will bring to Animoca its experience in developing games for various platforms, as well as expertise in virtual reality.
The current management of Blowfish will continue to operate the company, and will work with Animoca Brands to align efforts relating to blockchain integration, fungible tokens, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), play-to-earn capabilities, synergy opportunities, and product launches.
Animoca Brands recently raised $50 million from investors including Blue Pool Capital, a Hong Kong-based investment firm co-founded by Alibaba’s Jack Ma and Joe Tsai in 2014, Gobi Partners, Korea Investment Partners, Samsung Venture Investment Corporation, Token Bay Capital, and a slew of US investors.
Animoca achieved unicorn status in May this year when it raised $89 million at a valuation of $1 billion.
Its portfolio of blockchain investments and partnerships include Sky Mavis (Axie Infinity), Dapper Labs (CryptoKitties and NBA Top Shot), OpenSea, Harmony, Bitski, and Alien Worlds. Its subsidiaries include The Sandbox, Quidd, Gamee, nWay, Pixowl, and Lympo.