Sony is investing $250 million into a minority share of the North Carolina-based game developer Epic Games, most known for making the massively popular battle royale game Fortnite, the companies announced today.
The companies said the investment by Sony will “broaden their collaboration.” The release didn’t state what percentage share of the company the $250 million investment represents, but it’s reported that Sony will have a 1.4 percent share of Epic. That would value Epic at $17.86 billion, according to Venture Beat.
“Epic’s powerful technology in areas such as graphics places them at the forefront of game engine development with Unreal Engine and other innovations,” Sony chairman Kenichiro Yoshida said. “There’s no better example of this than the revolutionary entertainment experience, Fortnite. Through our investment, we will explore opportunities for further collaboration with Epic to delight and bring value to consumers and the industry at large, not only in games, but also across the rapidly evolving digital entertainment landscape.”
Including the investment by Sony, Epic has raised more than $1.83 billion in investments. In 2012, Chinese entertainment conglomerate Tencent paid $330 million for 40-percent ownership in Epic.
This deal comes at a pivotal time for Sony as it continues to compete with Microsoft in the video game console market. Both companies have said they plan on releasing their next generation of consoles, the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, in time for the 2020 holiday season despite concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.