Conan Exiles developer and publisher, Funcom, found itself advising shareholders to sell their shares to the Chinese tech giant, Tencent. The latter already owns a 29 per cent stake in the company and could move to acquire it entirely.
Tencent are moving forward with acquisitions of western gaming companies and Funcom is apparently the next one in line. The Norwegian developer apparently recommended the current shareholders to sell their stake in the company to Tencent as per press release from 22 January 2020.
Funcom's CEO, Rui Casais, reiterated that Tencent are the largest shareholder in the company and would like to go through with the opportunity to merge into the Chinese company. In his opinion, Tencent will provide Funcom with "operational leverage and insights" which may be needed to take the developer to the next level.
Steven Ma, senio vice president of Tencent, expressed the company's interest in Funcom due to its "strengths as a developer of open-world multiplayer, action and survival games". One of the driving factors appears to be their "track record in developing new titles with long life span" which is pretty much a great selling point in today's gaming industry, with all the obsession over Games as a Service model.
In case of acquisition, there will be no planned changes to Funcom management, staff or structure. It will apparently remain an independent business which will continue to support Conan Exiles, Secret World of Legends, Age of Conan and Anarchy Online.
Casais also mentioned that Tencent is a reputable long-term investor that has great operational capabilities.
As a reminder, Tencent has 100 per cent ownership of Riot Games, developers of League of Legends, since 2014 and the title is still running strong, at the top of the gaming world in general and even more so when it comes to esports.