Daybreak has been sold – again – this time to EG7 Global for $300M

And now we know Daybreak owns SSG, LOTRO, and DDO for sure

    
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Daybreak has been sold – again – this time to EG7 Global for $300M

Who had this on the end-of-the-year bingo card? Apparently, Daybreak has been bought out – again.

The company holding the hot potato this round is EG7 Global, which you’ll recall just recently made news for buying up Piranha Games, which runs Mechwarrior Online. According to the press release, the sale price for Daybreak was $300,000,000.

“On behalf of the Daybreak team and all of our players, we are elated to be joining the EG7 family,” Daybreak Executive Chairman Jason Epstein said in the press release. “The combined companies are strategically positioned to expand Daybreak’s unique and iconic portfolio of live games and will help amplify our passion for making great games for our awesome communities. I look forward to working closely with the team at EG7 to continue to deliver incredible experiences for our players around the world.”

MMORPG players don’t need to be reminded that Daybreak has been one hell of a ride the last few years. In 2015, Sony sold SOE off, at which point it rebranded as Daybreak as it brought along its stable of MMORPGs, including the EverQuest franchise, PlanetSide franchise, H1Z1 franchise, and DC Universe Online. The years since have seen the cancelation of the then-much-anticipated EverQuest Next and other games, sunsets of multiple other titles, several mass-layoffs, the closure of Player Studio, the departure of president John Smedley, a weird investment partnership with NantG, an esports financial scandal, and oh yeah, that whole thing where Daybreak accidentally admitted that Columbus Nova, which it had said since 2015 owned it, did not in fact own it, and then proceeded to scrub the internet of evidence – a bizarre tale that was easily our biggest story of the year in 2018.

Earlier this year, the company split its franchises up into sub-studios, which many gamers assumed heralded some sort of sale. The company also recently bought out Cold Iron Studios and its upcoming Alien title.

Incidentally, one of the annoyances plaguing Daybreak for the last few years is the fact that nobody would confirm whether or not Daybreak owned Standing Stone Games and its MMOs, Lord of the Rings Online and Dungeons and Dragons Online, or was merely publishing those games. The EG7 presser confirms that it owns the games and IP licenses, as well as gives a head-count on its playerbase and a clear look at the corporate revenues. This is more transparency on Daybreak than MMO players have gotten in many years.

“Daybreak possesses globally recognized third party IPs combined with valuable original IPs. Third party IPs include DC, Lord of the Rings and Dungeons & Dragons. Original IPs include EverQuest, H1Z1 and PlanetSide. The company has expertise in free-to-play and games as a service business model. Daybreak has a total of approximately 178 million registered users, with potential to leverage for marketing and reactivation. During the 12-month period ending on 30 September 2020, Daybreak reached a net revenue and adjusted EBITDA of USD 77.6m[1] and USD 29.0m[2], respectively. Significant product investments increased revenues in this period compared to previous years. The profitability was also increased during the period, driven by topline growth, owned first-party IPs, and cost reduction and justification during the global pandemic. […] The acquisition of Daybreak will further strengthen and add diversification to EG7’s IP portfolio through acquisition of best-in-class original and third-party IPs (EverQuest, The Lord of the Rings, Dungeons & Dragons, DC Universe Online). Daybreak will also add a strong team of both operationally and strategically capable individuals. The Transaction will increase size and profitability of the Company through stable cash flows from free-to-play model with loyal communities for existing IPs. Furthermore, the Daybreak platform offers future upside through upcoming content releases for e.g. DC Universe Online and The Lord of the Rings Online, potential synergies across the group, and strengthened team to identify and execute further M&A.”

Source: EG7 via Wccftech. Thanks, Wilhelm, Storm, and GD!

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Adam Russell

Wondering if that is more or less than what Columbus Nova paid for them 5 years ago.

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Sarah Cushaway

Bit surprising to see they’ve been sold for THAT much and to a company that gamers have actually heard of. I’m not sure what that may mean for the franchises, but I’m -really- hoping something good. A new EQ game (that isn’t the rumored battle royale bullshit which would be a MASSIVE slap in the face to all EQ fans) would be so welcomed right now.

But it’ll likely not happen :p and instead we’ll get the shitty cash grab borkered battle royale crap.

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teppic

I don’t think this confirms that Daybreak owns SSG, just the “Lord of the Rings and D&D IP” – it’s not clear if that means the IP licence for the MMOs or the games’ IP itself (though the latter is implied).

Even if Daybreak fully owns the games, that still doesn’t mean they own SSG. Compare Fallout New Vegas – the game’s IP was fully owned by Bethesda but it was developed by Obsidian, an independent company.

(In saying this, it would make sense for SSG to be owned by Daybreak if they own the games, since SSG doesn’t develop anything else, I just mean the statement above doesn’t confirm this.)

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Bryan Correll

The Investor Presentation (page 28) has the new division structure for EG7. It shows Darkpaw Games and Rogue Planet Games as divisions of Daybreak, with SSG and Dimensional Ink as divisions of Darkpaw.

https://www.enadglobal7.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/EG7-Investor-Presentation-Dec-2020-Acquires-Daybreak-Games.pdf

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teppic

Yeah, I saw that since posting earlier but thanks for the link.

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kjempff

/target “EqNext’s corpse”
/cast 8 (Reviviscence)
That is all and everything I wan’t of the mmo genre at this point.

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Jack Pipsam

It’s not worth that much in any way, shape or form.

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lorenzo marshall

Will EQ Next see the light of day now???

Celestia
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Celestia

I hope they do right by the employees and subscribers.

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BalsBigBrother

What is this Daybreak news, wait is it Friday already have I missed a couple of days again /sigh

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Life_Isnt_Just_Dank_Memes

Hopefully this means these studios can start working on new games with new tech?

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Viktor Budusov

I doubt it. EG7 is conglomerate of small and mediocre studios.

Freddy
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Freddy

Pink slips SoonTM? or do y’all think this is good? Would love to see substance in DBG’s titles once again.

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Rheem Octuris

I mean, it can’t be worse than it already is? At least this time it’s by someone who already has their hands in the video game industry.

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Utakata

I’m not sure they have anyone there left to let go though. >.<