The gaming industry has gradually moved towards acquisitions of development studios of various sizes. Gaming giants like Microsoft have set the trend with acquisitions like Bethesda Softworks, and Sony has also bought studios like Insomniac Games and more.
Last year, Microsoft announced a $68.7 Billion deal to acquire Activision Blizzard. Since then, many have wondered if PlayStation could make a similar move, if needed, in the future.
While Sony continues to succeed in the gaming market, the company might not be able to carry out an acquisition of a similar scale. According to a report from Resetera user Shoot, Sony has $5 Billion left for acquisitions before 2024.
The gaming giant has recently acquired companies like Bungie, Housemarque, and Haven Studios. For reference, Bungie cost $3.7 Billion for Sony, meaning that a new acquisition of this scale would account for a majority of Sony’s budget for 2023.
Sony is also much smaller than a company like Microsoft, so the limited budget is not too surprising. Thanks to the popularity of the Windows OS and more, Microsoft is a significant player in the PC market, giving the company more freedom when it comes to budgets.
Previous rumors have pointed to Sony buying Square Enix. Both companies have been on excellent terms in the past, with huge franchises like Final Fantasy being timed exclusives to PlayStation consoles for several months.
However, Sony’s limited budget might not allow these more significant acquisitions. As such, the gaming giant could buy smaller studios, similar to the Firesprite acquisition in 2021.
Sony has already developed a strong history of third-party partnerships across various development teams, and this could provide a key advantage to the gaming giant when it comes to seeking teams to add to PlayStation’s growing family.
A smaller acquisition is also less likely to be subject to scrutiny from regulators worldwide. Microsoft is currently struggling to buy Activision Blizzard, and Sony would not want to face a similar scenario.
Because of the changing landscape in the gaming industry, future acquisitions are nearly a given for all competitors. With a $5 Billion budget, Sony could buy several talented studios and developers, enhancing an already impressive list of first-party developers owned by the PlayStation brand.
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