NYSE-listed Sea Group announced today that its digital entertainment arm Garena has acquired independent games studio and developer Phoenix Labs.
Phoenix Labs is the company and studio behind a cross-platform, co-op action role-playing game called Dauntless. The partnership will see Phoenix Lab work with Garena to continue building world-class development capabilities, supporting the growth of Dauntless, and explore new growth opportunities in global markets and for mobile. It will also allow Phoenix Labs to tap into Garena’s global network and strengths in mobile games and community building, according to a statement by Sea.
“Our partners at Garena have been our most steadfast supporters since the early days of Phoenix Labs, and we are excited to join forces with a global games leader. With this next step, we’re able to ensure that we can provide the best possible experience for Dauntless players around the world,” said Jesse Houston, CEO and co-founder of Phoenix Labs in a statement.
Founded in 2014 by veteran game executives, Phoenix Lab has a team of more than 100 developers with deep experience in building AAA games, namely video games that are produced and distributed by major publishers. These games usually boast a large budget for production and marketing and therefore are expected to be of high quality. The company has offices in Vancouver, San Francisco, and Seattle and it launched its debut title Dauntless in 2019.
Meanwhile, Garena is headquartered in Singapore. It had over 320 million quarterly active users in the third quarter of 2019, the statement said. Its game Free Fire was the most downloaded mobile game globally in 2019, according to App Annie. Garena was one of the earliest investors in Phoenix Lab.
“Over the last few years, we have watched Phoenix Labs mature into one of the best development teams in the business and launch a hugely exciting title in Dauntless. We also know that they share our mission of making great games, creating the best teams, and putting players first. Our skills sets are highly complementary, and we see many exciting opportunities ahead that our teams can explore together,” said Forrest Li, founder and group CEO of Sea in the statement.