Rumored Bungie/Microsoft Split is Now Official
Written Friday, October 05, 2007 By Alan PettitView author's profile
KIRKLAND, Wash. — Oct. 5, 2007 — Bungie and Microsoft Corp. today announced a plan for Bungie Studios, the developers of Microsoft’s “Halo” franchise, to become a privately held independent company, Bungie, LLC, in which Microsoft will hold a minority equity interest. As part of this transaction, Bungie and Microsoft have forged a deep and long-term development and publishing relationship focused on the continued success of the “Halo” franchise. It is also the intent of both parties to expand their partnership to include new IP created and owned by Bungie.
Bungie’s critically acclaimed Xbox 360® exclusive “Halo 3” achieved $300 million in global sales in its first week. Released on Tuesday, Sept. 25, “Halo 3” is the fastest-selling video game ever and already one of the most successful entertainment properties in history.
“This exciting evolution of our relationship with Microsoft will enable us to expand both creatively and organizationally in our mission to create world-class games,” said Harold Ryan, studio head for Bungie. “We will continue to develop with our primary focus on Microsoft’s platforms; we greatly value our mutually prosperous relationship with our publisher, Microsoft Game Studios, and we look forward to continuing that affiliation through ‘Halo’ and beyond.”
“Working with Microsoft was great for us, it allowed us to grow as a team and make the ambitious, blockbuster games we all wanted to work on. And they will continue to be a great partner. But Bungie is like a shark. We have to keep moving to survive. We have to continually test ourselves, or we might as well be dolphins. Or manatees,” said Jason Jones, Bungie founder and partner.
Bungie’s management retained the services of Don Leeds, senior managing director of B-Hive Global, LLC, to assist in the structuring of the deal and negotiating on their behalf. Bungie will remain in Kirkland, Washington, and is always looking to hire excellent talent.
Bungie was founded in 1991 with two goals: to develop games that combine brilliant technology, beautiful art, intelligent stories and deep gameplay, and to sell enough of those games to achieve its real goal of total world domination. Over the past 10 years it has produced games such as the “Marathon” trilogy and the first two “Myth” games, hailed as classics by critics and gamers around the world. Bungie’s “Halo” franchise is an international award-winning action title that has grown into a global entertainment phenomenon, selling more than 18 million units worldwide, logging billions of hours of multiplayer action on Xbox LIVE®, and spawning action figures, books, graphic novels, soundtracks, apparel and more. The critically acclaimed “Halo 3”, released on Tuesday, Sept. 25th 2007, is the fastest-selling video game ever, achieving $300 million in global sales its first week, making it one of the most successful entertainment properties in history. More information on Bungie can be found at http://www.bungie.net.