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IGN buys Eurogamer, VG247, and Rock Paper Shotgun – layoffs have already started


Eurogamer is now owned by IGN (Gamer Network)

The company that owns IGN now also owns British company Gamer Network and sites including GamesIndustry.biz and Dicebreaker.

There is one simple reason why major acquisitions should never be celebrated: consolidation. There’re dozens of reasons why larger companies swallowing up smaller ones is bad for consumers but the reason they’re bad for employees is that they always lead to layoffs, due to job duplication and an immediate need to cut costs after the purchase itself.

We’ve seen that recently with Xbox and Bethesda and now it’s happened almost instantaneously with IGN’s acquisition of the Gamer Network group of websites, which includes such influential sites as Eurogamer, GamesIndustry.biz, Rock Paper Shotgun, and VG247.

The network has been up for sale for a while, after previous owner ReedPop decided it didn’t want to run it any more. That’s why a number of senior staff have left the various sites over the last few months, but many others have lost their jobs today.

The Gamer Network includes Eurogamer (with six different language versions), Rock Paper Shotgun, VG247, GamesIndustry.biz, and Dicebreaker. It also owns shares in Hookshot, which runs Nintendo Life, Push Square, Pure Xbox and Time Extension; Outside Xbox; and Digital Foundry.

That means that IGN won’t own Digital Foundry outright but will presumably still run their content via Eurogamer. VGC is also contracted as part of Gamer Network but is privately owned and not part of the sale.

Gamer Network was a family business up until 2018, when they were sold to ReedPop. As many predicted at the time, ReedPop was only really interested in live events like EGX and MCM and recently announced that the website business was up for sale.

Apart from GamesIndustry.biz, most of the sites don’t include any mention of the acquisition at time of writing but reports are currently emerging of instant layoffs, including GamesIndustry.biz managing editor Brendan Sinclair and Rock Paper Shotgun deputy editor Alice Bell.

It’s currently unclear how much IGN paid for the sites or exactly how many people will be laid off as a result of the acquisition.

All of this is a sadly familiar tale across the games industry at the moment, with this news radically changing the media landscape in the UK for video games, with now only a handful of dedicated sites remaining outside of the control of American companies.

One company owning everything is never good news (Gamer Network)

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