Rockstar Games Acquires Dhruva Interactive From Starbreeze Studios

For just under eight million dollars.
Dhruva Interactive is best known for their work on Payday 2.
Dhruva Interactive is best known for their work on Payday 2. Starbreeze Studios

In a press release made yesterday, Rockstar Games has announced that it acquired Dhruva Interactive, an Indian art production studio, for $7.9 million from previous owner Starbreeze.

The sale will close sometime during the first half of this year and give Rockstar Games a controlling share in Dhruva, which Starbreeze previously owned at 91.82 percent. This is actually a good sale, as this is not Rockstar’s first venture in India. Dhruva Interactive, once the sale closes, will operate alongside Rockstar India, the latest in Rockstar Games’ many subsidiaries. The studio is located in Bangalore, India.

Back in 2016, Starbreeze, who is most known for its Payday series, acquired Dhruva for $8.5 million. The art production studio was at the time one of the biggest gaming companies in India, which traces its roots to 1997 and employs over 320 people. Dhruva Interactive boasted an impressive portfolio even before Starbreeze acquired it, including work on titles such as Halo 5, Forza Horizon 3, Quantum Break and most recently Sea of Thieves. After the acquisition by Starbreeze, Dhruva Interactive helped develop Starbreeze's Payday 2.

"Rockstar Games are the undisputed leaders of innovation and creativity in modern game development," said Rajesh Rao, Dhruva's CEO and founder, in a press release. "Dhruva Interactive was founded with the aim of creating a world-class game development community in India, and so bringing the Dhruva team under the Rockstar Games label is further proof that we have succeeded in creating a talented team that can contribute to the best games in the world while helping to create a thriving local game developer community in India."

It has not been a good year figure-wise for Starbreeze, which is most likely the reason for the sale. Their latest title, a rendition of The Walking Dead as a first-person shooter which they published, failed to make a huge impact. It is now no longer available on Steam following disputes from Skybound Entertainment, who owns The Walking Dead license. That comes after a failed console launch that was being developed by 505 Games, which is quite the unlucky streak.

Starbreeze hopes to bounce back with its next major project, a Payday mobile game.


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