sold a minority interest in the company to China's Tencent Holdings. It was the first time in 21 years the Unreal Engine creator and Gears of War and Infinity Blade developer accepted outside investment.
"We've always taken pride in being an independent developer of fun games and cutting-edge technology," Epic Games president Mike Capps said in prepared statements about why the company took a major investment deal after such a long time. "We want to assure our players and licensees that this transaction only brings more to the table in terms of what we can offer them."
"Epic has worked with Tencent for years through our Unreal Engine licensing relationship," Capps added. "They have fantastic inroads into attractive markets and platforms, and Epic has been carefully weighing its options for the next generation of games for quite some time. We can learn a lot from Tencent, and strategically aligning with them was an easy decision."
Capps explained that Epic will maintain all intellectual property rights and maintain the Unreal Engine licensing business. He wouldn't comment if this is just the prelude to a full buyout. Capps makes no secret of Tencent being a long-term partner, but notes Epic enjoys its independence.