Global investment firm Carlyle (NASDAQ: CG) and CVC, a leading global private markets manager, are pleased to announce that CVC Capital Partners Fund VIII and Haveli Investments have agreed to the acquisition of Jagex, a leading developer and publisher of video games.
Jagex is primarily known for its key RuneScape titles, the leading Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (“MMORPG”). RuneScape boasts a 20+ year history of leadership in the development of live service gaming, an unparalleled and vibrant community of 2.4 million active subscribers and one million free-to-play users, with over 300 million lifetime RuneScape accounts. Founded in 2000 and based in Cambridge, UK, Jagex is one of the largest and most successful British video game studios, developing and publishing video games on PC and mobile – with 700 employees.
Carlyle invested in Jagex through Carlyle Partners (“CP”) VII, Carlyle’s flagship US buyout fund, and Carlyle Europe Technology Partners (“CETP”) IV, a €1.35 billion fund that invests in middle-market technology-focused companies. During its ownership period, Carlyle worked in partnership with Jagex’s management team to: increase growth across its core titles through operational improvements including marketing and CRM initiatives; broaden the distribution of its games portfolio through new channels and platforms; execute M&A to expand the Jagex platform and create a strong independent player in forever games; and invest in new content releases, user acquisition, gameplay experience, and portfolio diversification. Jagex acquired Gamepires in 2022, the developer of SCUM, an open-world survival game acclaimed by players for its detailed survival mechanics and character customisation. Jagex also acquired Pipeworks Studios in 2022, adding a broad portfolio of game development expertise and a world-class Games-as-a-Service platform.
“Jagex has transformed significantly in recent years thanks to the hard work of our entire team as well as the insight and expertise we have leveraged through our partnership with Carlyle,” said Phil Mansell, Chief Executive of Jagex.
Jagex is now very well-positioned to continue in its mission of creating new and innovative player experiences as it also looks to reach new communities under the leadership of CEO Phil Mansell, supported by CVC and Haveli Investments.
The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals.
Financial advisors on the transaction for Carlyle are Morgan Stanley & Aream, and Goldman Sachs advised the transaction vehicle to be funded by CVC Fund VIII and Haveli.