I can't comment on a $750 million buyout, but we would have turned it down, says Unity CEO

Deflects industry rumour with future ambition

I can't comment on a $750 million buyout, but we would have turned it down, says Unity CEO
One of the most interesting rumours at the Develop in Brighton 2013 conference concerns middleware outfit Unity Technologies turning down an acquisition deal worth $750 million.

Earlier in the week, it announced it now has over 2 million registered developers; underlying its status as the industry's de facto game development tool.

Significantly, though, the company is very careful not to use such terms, merely talking about its drive to 'democractise game development'.

Big bucks

Of course, there aren't many companies which could spend that sort of money; putting giants such as Autodesk, Google or Apple into the frame.

But perhaps what's more significant about the rumour isn't its size, but that Unity turned it down.

Despite its success, Unity remains a very modest company; in part reflecting its Nordic roots. The company was formed in Denmark with German, Danish and Icelandic co-founders.

One direction

It's believed that the management team retain operational control of the company's future. It's raised $17.5 million in venture capital; a relatively small amount in the circumstances.

Still, the nature of the rumourmill means that some industry insiders are now suggesting the only reason Unity would turn down such a deal is it eventually plans to IPO.

This would allow it maintains control of its destiny while raising the cash its investors will eventually want to extract.

As for official word from Unity, CEO David Helgason had a typically angled comment.

"We can't comment on these [rumours], but I can say that we would have turned such an offer down," he said.
Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.


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