World of Warcraft Dev Pipeline to be Expanded

On July 1, Blizzard Entertainment, part of Activision-Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), Announced it had closed a deal to acquire Proletariat Inc., the Boston-based developer of Spellbreak.

While terms of the deal have yet to be released, it could represent perhaps Blizzard’s largest acquisition in a decade. And with Proletariat now part of the ATVI team, Blizzard will expand its development pipeline for one of its biggest titles, World of Warcraft.

Activision-Blizzard CEO, Bobby Kotick said, “Over the next two years we plan to hire hundreds of the best developers to serve the needs of our World of Warcraft players. The extraordinary team at Proletariat will be a key component of our talent acquisition efforts.”

Seth Sivak, the co-founder of Proletariat said, “We are incredibly excited to be joining Blizzard Entertainment. Our team has always strived to put players first, and in working with the World of Warcraft team, we have learned that we are completely aligned in our commitments to innovation, quality, investing in our talent, authentic communication, and representation—both in and out of the games we make.”

Earlier this year, Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ: MSFT) announced an acquisition deal for Activision-Blizzard, for $69 billion in cash (valuing ATVI at $95/share). While ATVI shareholders have already approved it, the deal is still under regulatory review and is widely expected to close before July of next year.

With this new Blizzard/Proletariat deal, the total dollar value of mergers, acquisitions, investments, and IPOs in the video game space continues to break all-time records.

Just a bit over halfway through the year, 2022’s announced deal value is already far greater than that of 2021. The market expects game deals will continue, and research from Drake Star Partners predicts we’ll see $150 billion in deals before the year is out; compared to $85 billion last year.

Should Drake Star be correct, there are still tens-of-billions-of-dollars in deals yet to occur.