‘League of Legends’ is now fully owned by China’s Tencent

23 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Chinese holding company Tencent swallows up Riot Games.

Billion-dollar Chinese Internet firm Tencent bought a majority stake in Riot Games back in February 2011, and now it has closed out the deal by fully acquiring the games firm behind hit title ‘League of Legends’.

The developers behind popular multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) League of Legends now belong entirely to Tencent, the Chinese conglomerate behind similarly popular QQ instant messenger.In a post on their website, Riot Games has announced that the company’s majority investor has upgraded their status to full ownership — and there’ll be changes. That’s according to a post from Riot Games — hat tip to Polygon for spotting — which disclosed a change to its equity and employee rewards structure after “our majority investor, Tencent, recently purchased the remaining equity of Riot Games.” Tencent is believed to have bought its 85 percent majority stake for “more than $350 million” according to a Wall Street Journal report written at the time. TCEHY -1.04 % said it had bought all of the shares in U.S. online-game company Riot Games it didn’t already own, in a deal that gives the Chinese Internet giant full control of the developer of the popular “League of Legends.” Riot’s “League of Legends,” one of the highest grossing online games with avid fans around the world, is an important asset for Tencent, analysts say.

The announcement was made public in a blog post about employee compensation, revealing that Tencent now controls 100% of the company’s stock. “As a result of our continued growth and changing circumstances,” the blog post reads, “we’re shifting to a new structure to recognize and reward Rioters’ contributions – and that first involves a big change to our existing equity program. It does, however, explain that the move will allow the company to transition from the current equity incentive program to cash-based incentives. “This program comes in addition to our highly competitive salaries, open PTO, learning and development programs, 401K match, subsidized medical plans, and kitchens stocked with snax (poro and otherwise) all full-time Rioters get,” Riot, which was ranked #13 on Fortune’s best companies to work for this year, said.

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