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The Next Web

Microsoft acquires Bethesda — here’s what that means for gamers

It’s the coup of the century. Microsoft just purchased ZeniMax and Bethesda for $7.5 billion, meaning it just added some of the biggest games and game makers ever to its stable. What does this mean for the millions of gamers bracing for the next generation of console releases? Today is a special day… We are THRILLED to welcome the talented teams and beloved game franchises of @Bethesda to Team Xbox! Read the full announce from @XboxP3: https://t.co/Jn0HcTJ9Mi pic.twitter.com/iQVutgT6zq — Xbox (@Xbox) September 21, 2020 The two companies announced the acquisition this morning. In case you don’t know, this now puts the likes of Bethesda Game Studios, id Software, and Arkane in Microsoft‘s hands. The Big M sure wasn’t shy about its success, saying in its announcement, “These are the teams responsible for franchises like The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, Wolfenstein, DOOM, Dishonored, Prey, Quake, Starfield and many more.” That price tag is one of the largest in any gaming industry acquisition ever. For context, $7.5 billion is three times what Microsoft paid for Minecraft developer Mojang. It’s not a coincidence this was revealed right before pre-orders for the Xbox Series consoles go live. An acquisition of this magnitude is definitely the sort of thing that moves consoles. Considering the Xbox Series took a blow when Halo: Infinite was delayed, this news is likely to put it back in the running. Read: Are EVs too expensive? Here are 5 common myths, debunked So far, both Bethesda and Microsoft have delicately avoided the million-dollar (or, more accurately, the…Continue readingMicrosoft acquires Bethesda — here’s what that means for gamers

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VentureBeat

Nvidia acquires Arm from SoftBank for $40 billion

Nvidia confirmed that it is acquiring processor architecture firm Arm from Softbank for $40 billion. The deal confirms after weeks of speculation as well as a report yesterday by the Wall Street Journal. Santa Clara, California-based Nvidia, a maker of graphics and AI chips, said the deal consolidates its expertise in artificial intelligence with Arm’s vast computing ecosystem. Cambridge, England-based Arm has more than 6,000 employees, while Nvidia has more than 13,000. SoftBank took Arm private in 2016 for $32 billion. At the time, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son said he was preparing for the Singularity, the predicted day when AI collectively becomes more intelligent than human beings. But SoftBank has run into a cash crunch after losing billions of dollars due to the pandemic and bad bets on Uber and WeWork. Nvidia said it will expand Arm’s presence in the U.K. by establishing a world-class AI research and education center there, and it will build an Arm/Nvidia-powered AI supercomputer for research. Nvidia also said that it would continue the open-licensing policy of Arm with its customers, who shipped more than 22 billion chips last year for everything from smartphones to tablet computers and internet of things sensors. Nvidia, by comparison, ships around 100 million. In a letter to employees, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang said, “Arm’s business model is brilliant. We will maintain its open-licensing model and customer neutrality, serving customers in any industry, across the world, and further expand Arm’s IP licensing portfolio with NVIDIA’s world-leading GPU and AI technology.”…Continue readingNvidia acquires Arm from SoftBank for $40 billion

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TechCrunch

Fresh off $200M Series D, Gong acquires early stage startup Vayo – TechCrunch

Gong announced a $200 million Series D investment just last month, and loaded with fresh cash, the company wasted no time taking advantage. Today, it announced it was buying early stage Isreali sales technology startup Vayo. The companies did not share terms of the deal, but Gong CEO Amit Bendov said the deal closed a couple of weeks ago. The two companies match up quite well from a tech standpoint. While Gong searches unstructured data like emails and phone call transcripts and finds nuggets of data, Vaya looks at structured data, which is essentially the output of the Gong search process. What’s more, it handles large amounts of data at scale. “Vayo helps find customer interactions at a large scale to identify trends like customers likely to churn or usage is going up, or your deals are starting to slow down — and they do this for structured data at scale,” Bendov told TechCrunch. He said this ability to identify trends was really what attracted him to the company, even though it was still at an early stage of development. “It’s a perfect fit for Gong. We take unstructured data —  emails, audio calls video calls — and extract insights. Customers, especially with a large organization, don’t want to see individual interactions but high order insights […] and they’ve developed [a solution] to identify trends on large data volumes for customer interactions,” he said. Vayo was founded in 2018 and raised $1.7 million in seed capital, according to Crunchbase. Joining…Continue readingFresh off $200M Series D, Gong acquires early stage startup Vayo – TechCrunch

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TechCrunch

RealPage acquires real estate IoT startup Stratis – TechCrunch

RealPage, a publicly traded full-service property management technology firm with over 12,200 clients worldwide, today announced that it has acquired Stratis IoT,  a startup that provides IoT services to the real estate industry, with a focus on access and energy management tools. “RealPage aims to become a leading provider in the burgeoning rental property automation market, and thereby create significant opportunity for operators to increase rents, improve sustainability, add operational efficiencies, reduce operating costs and enhance the customer experience for the company’s approximately 19 million units throughout the United States,” said RealPage CEO Steve Winn. “The smart building technology also provides a launching pad for expanded international operations, thanks to Stratis’ existing international presence.” Stratis is currently installed in about 380,000 homes in the U.S., Japan, UK and several countries in Europe and Latin America. Both Stratis and RealPage target a wide range of the real estate industry, ranging from multifamily units to student housing, vacation homes and commercial real estate. Image Credits: Stratis Traditionally, the real estate market wasn’t always the first to adopt modern technologies. That’s quickly changing now, though, in part because of the promise of IoT, which isn’t just a boon to renters looking for modern solutions in their apartments but also represents the possibility of significant cost savings for the industry. RealPage argues that smart technology can generate a revenue lift of $55 per unit, for example, and that’s the kind of saving (and higher revenues) that will push even legacy B2B platforms to modernize.…Continue readingRealPage acquires real estate IoT startup Stratis – TechCrunch

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TechCrunch

Cryptocurrency exchange FTX acquires portfolio tracker Blockfolio – TechCrunch

FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange that offers derivatives, options and other sophisticated products, is acquiring a popular portfolio tracking app, Blockfolio. FTX is spending $150 million for the acquisition. But take that price with a grain of salt as it’s a combination of cash, cryptocurrency and stock. Cryptocurrency (and stock) in particular might not be perfectly liquid. While an exchange buying a portfolio tracking app seems to be a right fit, they don’t necessarily have the same audience right now. FTX is better positioned for professional traders as it lets you trade on futures markets and it even offers ERC-20 tokens that track the volatility of bitcoin. Blockfolio is a consumer app and it has been downloaded over 6 million times on iOS and Android. The startup had previously raised $17 million from Founders Fund, Pantera Capital, Dan Matuszewski, DCM Ventures, Hashkey Digital Asset Group and others. As the name suggests, Blockfolio lets you add your portfolio of cryptocurrencies and track their value over time. The app also lets you view market moves by searching for a token in the app. You can also automate portfolio tracking by connecting the app with your exchange accounts. With today’s move, FTX wants to launch a simpler trading experience for retail customers. The teams behind FTX and Blockfolio are already working together on a Blockfolio-branded trading product. And if FTX takes advantage of Blockfolio’s user base, it’s certainly going to be a big advantage when it comes to liquidity. Source linkContinue readingCryptocurrency exchange FTX acquires portfolio tracker Blockfolio – TechCrunch

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TechCrunch

Warner Music acquires IMGN, a social media publishing platform, for under $100M – TechCrunch

It’s a whole new playing field these days for music labels and publishers, and today one of the biggies made an acquisition to help it sharpen up its strategy to better understand what people want to see and hear online today. Warner Music — with a market cap of $15.4 billion, one of the big three recording giants (alongside Universal and Sony) and which owns labels like Atlantic, Elektra and others and has a huge roster of artists that includes the likes of Madonna, Ed Sheeran and Linkin Park — is acquiring IMGN Media, a Tel Aviv and New York-based startup that builds and tracks viral social media content in categories like esports and gaming, ASMR and entertainment. IMGN used to be called Comedy.com. It widened its remit from simply funny stuff and rebranded in 2017, and according to its site has about 3 billion views per month and has some 40 million subscribers to its content, with some 85% of that classified as “Gen Z and millennials.” The news caps off several weeks of speculation about the startup. In July, reports in the Israeli press emerged that said IMGN was being circled by Snap for about $180 million; and further to that, a source told us that TikTok was also in the frame, looking at the company at a price tag of around $150 million. In the end, the terms of the acquisition were not disclosed, but we understand the deal was done for just under $100 million. IMGN was founded…Continue readingWarner Music acquires IMGN, a social media publishing platform, for under $100M – TechCrunch

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VentureBeat

Daybreak Games acquires Cold Iron Studios, saving the next Alien game

Daybreak Games has acquired Cold Iron Studios, which is making a PC and console game set in the Alien universe. Daybreak said that cofounder Craig Zinkievich will continue to run Cold Iron, which is in San Jose, California. The purchase price was not disclosed. Yes, in space, no one can hear you scream. And hopefully, the screaming of the Cold Iron’s developers will cease after they’ve been bounced around so long. Zinkievich will report to Daybreak Games CEO Ji Ham. The company said the studio will continue to work on the sci-fi action game. The genesis of Cold Iron and the Alien game has been a long one. The studio’s founders started it in 2015; they’re former creators of City of Heroes, Star Trek Online, and Neverwinter. FoxNext Games announced in January 2018 that it acquired Cold Iron Studios from the former Kabam, which was split into different parts. Disney assumed ownership of FoxNext Games when it acquired Fox in March 2019. Then Disney sold FoxNext Games to Scopely, but mobile game publisher Scopely said Cold Iron was not a good fit for its portfolio. So it began shopping the studio around, and Daybreak made the winning bid. Under the new ownership, Cold Iron will operate independently, with Daybreak acting as its publisher, providing marketing, tech, and operational support. The studio has more than 40 developers. Source linkContinue readingDaybreak Games acquires Cold Iron Studios, saving the next Alien game

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The Verge

Apple reportedly acquires startup that could turn iPhones into payment terminals

Apple has acquired a startup with technology that could turn iPhones into mobile payment terminals, Bloomberg reported. Montreal-based Mobeewave has tech that requires only an NFC chip to work, allowing users to tap either their smartphone or a credit card to another phone for payment processing. NFC chips have been included in iPhones since the iPhone 6. And while Apple Pay lets shoppers tap their iPhones to pay at a retail store, adding Mobeewave could allow any iPhone to accept payments without extra hardware like a card reader. According to Bloomberg, Apple paid about $100 million for Mobeewave, and has retained its team of employees. Neither company would comment on the transaction. Rival phone manufacturer Samsung partnered with Mobeewave last year on a pilot point-of-sale program in Canada. And as Bloomberg notes, Samsung’s venture division is an investor in Mobeewave. Apple has acquired several other startups this year so far, including popular weather app Dark Sky in March. It looks to be integrating Dark Sky’s features into its native weather app in iOS 14 and has shut down the Android version of the Dark Sky app as of August 1st. Apple also confirmed in May that it bought VR broadcast company NextVR. Source linkContinue readingApple reportedly acquires startup that could turn iPhones into payment terminals

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TechCrunch

Atlassian acquires asset management company Mindville – TechCrunch

Atlassian today announced that it has acquired Mindville, a Jira-centric enterprise asset management firm based in Sweden. Mindville’s more than 1,700 customers include the likes of NASA, Spotify and Samsung. Image Credits: Atlassian With this acquisition, Atlassian is getting into a new market, too, by adding asset management tools to its lineup of services. The company’s flagship product is Mindville Insights, which helps IT, HR, sales, legal and facilities to track assets across a company. It’s completely agnostic as to which assets you are tracking, though, given Atlassian’s user base, most companies will likely use it to track IT assets like servers and laptops. But in addition to physical assets, you also can use the service to automatically import cloud-based servers from AWS, Azure and GCP, for example, and the team has built connectors to services like Service Now and Snow Software, too. Image Credits: Mindville “Mindville Insight provides enterprises with full visibility into their assets and services, critical to delivering great customer and employee service experiences. These capabilities are a cornerstone of IT Service Management (ITSM), a market where Atlassian continues to see strong momentum and growth,” Atlassian’s head of tech teams Noah Wasmer writes in today’s announcement. Co-founded by Tommy Nordahl and Mathias Edblom, Mindville never raised any institutional funding, according to Crunchbase. The two companies also didn’t disclose the acquisition price. Like some of Atlassian’s other recent acquisitions, including Code Barrel, the company was already an Atlassian partner and successfully selling its service in the Atlassian Marketplace.…Continue readingAtlassian acquires asset management company Mindville – TechCrunch

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Engadget

Apple TV+ acquires Werner Herzog’s meteorite documentary ‘Fireball’

When Apple TV+ launched, the space drama For All Mankind was immediately well-received, and now Apple has acquired a space documentary. Directed by Werner Herzog — taking a break from his Mandalorian duties — and professor Clive Oppenheimer, Fireball promises to help viewers “discover how shooting stars, meteorites and deep impacts have focused the human imagination on other realms and worlds, and on our past and our future.” The two previously collaborated on other documentaries, including their volcano deep-dive Into the Inferno, which premiered on Netflix in 2016. This documentary was announced in 2018 and is produced by Spring Films. There’s no release date mentioned, but with many productions sidelined due to the pandemic, competition over content that’s ready to release may get fiercer. Source linkContinue readingApple TV+ acquires Werner Herzog’s meteorite documentary ‘Fireball’