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Keywords acquires HVS for $50m

The acquisition is part of the Group’s strategy to become the main technical and creative services platform for the global video games industry.

We are overjoyed to join an industry-leading global group such as Keywords Studios. We are tremendously excited they share our vision for augmenting our development capabilities and they will provide us the ability to embark upon a growth trajectory for our business creating the next generation of AAA games.

Kerry Ganofsky, HVS’ founder and majority shareholder

Game services provider Keywords Studios has agreed a deal to buy games development services provider High Voltage for up to $50 million. Founded in 1993 by majority shareholder, Kerry Ganofsky, who will continue leading the studio within Keywords Studios, High Voltage is an end-to-end, full-service, AAA game developer based near Chicago, Illinois, with a subsidiary studio in New Orleans, Louisiana. Among its credits are Fortnite, Saints Row, Mortal Kombat, Hunter the Reckoning, The Conduit, and Lego Racers.

The terms of the acquisition will see Keywords Studios pay an initial consideration of $23.75 million in cash and the equivalent of $9.75 million in new ordinary shares, plus a deferred consideration of up to $16.5 million if performance targets are met by 31 December 2021. High Voltage is expected to generate earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of $9 million in 2021. Keywords has made a number of key acquisition in the past couple of years, including Gnet Media last month and games development services company Heavy Iron Studios in September.

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