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Embracer Group finally sells Gearbox Software, but keeps Gearbox Publishing

Mordecai in Borderlands 1.

Embracer Group finally confirmed that it is selling Borderlands studio Gearbox Entertainment to Take-Two Interactive, but there’s a catch: Embracer Group will retain ownership of Gearbox Publishing.

Embracer Group acquired Gearbox Entertainment in 2021 but is now offloading much of it as part of a restructuring plan meant to recoup money after a deal fell through in 2023. Take-Two Interactive’s 2K already published all the Borderlands games, so it’s a sensible $460 million purchase that also nets them franchises like Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, Homeworld, Risk of Rain, Brothers in Arms, and Duke Nukem. In terms of studios, Take-Two Interactive is only acquiring Gearbox Software, Gearbox Montreal, and Gearbox Studio Quebec, the company’s primary development arms. Randy Pitchford will remain CEO as well.

A picture from inside Gearbox Entertainment
Gearbox Entertainment

That still accounts for 1,336 developers, but it’s not the whole company that was known as Gearbox Entertainment under Embracer Group. That’s because Gearbox had greatly expanded into game publishing following the acquisition of Perfect World Entertainment, which was renamed Gearbox Publishing San Francisco. By retaining ownership of Gearbox Publishing, as well as game developers Cryptic Studios, Lost Boys Interactive, and Captured Dimension, Embracer Group maintains control of the publishing rights to games like Remnant: From the Ashes, Remnant II, Neverwinter Online, Star Trek Online, and the upcoming Hyper Light Breaker.

Embracer Group obviously plans to rename Gearbox Publishing San Francisco, outlining that the kept companies “will be welcomed and integrated into other parts of Embracer Group in the coming period” but that they “are expected to contribute with positive cash flow going forward.”

Embracer Group’s sale of Gearbox is expected to close before the end of June. Take-Two’s press release on the sale confirms Gearbox has six projects in development, including a new IP and a new Borderlands game, all of which will be published by 2K.

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Tomas Franzese
Gaming Staff Writer
Tomas Franzese is a Staff Writer at Digital Trends, where he reports on and reviews the latest releases and exciting…
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