It looks like Sony is gearing up to buy more third-party game studios, as the tech giant is now looking for a director to spearhead future PlayStation investment and acquisition plans.
In a new job posting spotted by business analyst Roberto Serrano (via VGC), Sony is offering a director of business development to identify “opportunities for inorganic growth through acquisitions, investments or joint ventures”.
“The team sources, evaluates and executes transactions that are aligned with SIE’s strategic priorities and generate significant long-term value for the company,” the announcement continues.
“The core work of the team is to develop market intelligence through strong internal and external relationships to identify attractive mergers and acquisitions. [mergers and acquisitions] and investment opportunities.
This lines up with comments from Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO and President Jim Ryan earlier this year. Ryan suggested the company had more third-party studios in sight and thought acquisitions and mergers were a useful way to expand its market reach.
“We’re in a really good position with PlayStation Studios right now and have been for a few years,” Ryan said.
“The critical success and commercial success of the games they created […] it gave us permission to invest heavily in content creation.
Continue the trend
The year was a crazy time for studio takeovers. Take-Two opened 2022 by buying Zynga, before Microsoft surprised everyone by announcing its plan to acquire Activision Blizzard for a staggering $69 billion. Sony has not been left behind, revealing plans to buy Destiny developer Bungie.
But acquisitions aren’t a phenom in 2022. In 2021, Sony acquired five game studios, including Returnal developer Housemarque, Demon’s Souls carrier Bluepoint, Valkyrie Entertainment, Firespirt, and Nixxes.
In light of this list of takeovers, it’s no surprise that Sony is looking for a dedicated manager to lead future mergers and acquisitions. This is another indication of the progressive monopolization of the gaming industry, as major players attempt to consolidate their game catalogs before moving to subscription-based sales models.
Sony unveiled its revamped PS Plus service a few months ago, which will serve as a competitor to the Xbox Games Pass. It will be keen to do everything in its power to make the service more appealing than Microsoft’s, such as securing a list of third-party PlayStation-exclusive titles.
This is doubly important in the case of Sony. The publisher has already announced that its first-party versions won’t be added to PS Plus the same day they’re released, meaning subscribers won’t be able to access Sony’s latest triple-A titles. Microsoft, however, has had great success adding first-party titles like Halo Infinite to Xbox Game Pass on launch day. If Sony doesn’t find something new to attract gamers, it will miss out.