Tencent Completes Acquisition Of ‘League Of Legends’ Dev Riot Games


Riot Games, Inc. has just announced that Tencent Holdings Ltd., the biggest internet company in China, has bought the remaining equity of the developer.

This deal gives Tencent full ownership of the American video game publisher and developer, known for its multiplayer online battle arena, real-time strategy video game, League of Legends.

Though the financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, a report says that prior to the deal, Tencent owned 93 percent of Riot's stakes.

Riot Games made the announcement on their official website, saying that there were incoming "Riot comp changes."

"As a result of our continued growth and changing circumstances, we're shifting to a new structure to recognize and reward Rioters' contributions," read the announcement. "And that first involves a big change to our existing equity program."

Riot explained that the change allowed them to gear away from the existing equity program, and move in the direction of a cash-based incentive program that lets Rioters take part in the success of the company.

In the announcement, Riot also claims that the change is an addition to their competitive salary rates, open PTO, professional development programs, 401K match and subsidized medical plans, not to mention their snack-stocked pantries.

Tencent's first investment in Riot came four years ago, when Tencent acquired a majority stake in Riot. The move was made in an effort to fortify its online games offerings. Since 2011, Tencent has steadily expanded its stakes within Riot.

The Chinese company currently runs WeChat and QQ, both popular messaging applications. It also owns 40 percent of Epic Games, a North Carolina-based video game development company, known for its Unreal and Gears of War series for Xbox 360. Online game revenues make up over half of Tencent's earnings.

While the deal will allow for League of Legends' release in China, among many other changes, Los Angeles-based Riot will continue to its operations independently.

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