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Funcom has acquired control of Conan the Barbarian and other popular culture intellectual properties with its acquisition of Cabinet Group.
The Oslo, Norway-based Funcom will merge the properties into its IP studio Heroic Signatures. In addition to Conan, it is acquiring IPs such as Mutant Year Zero and Solomon Kane. The purchase price wasn’t disclosed.
The Cabinet Group was formerly known as Paradox Entertainment. Funcom CEO Rui Casais said in a statement that the company has high ambitions for the IPs and revealed it has at least one unannounced project already in development.
“We are currently overseeing the development of an unannounced game which will combine many of the characters in the Robert E. Howard universe,” said Casais. “And if you combine Funcom’s knowledge of games with Heroic Signatures’ knowledge of the TV/entertainment, publishing, and licensing industries, it makes us perfectly placed to take this venture to the next level. It’s exciting times ahead for us and for fans of the IPs.”
Funcom already had the interactive rights to the IP’s shared 50-50 with Cabinet Group. Now, the company has 100% ownership of the rights to everything, including motion picture, comics and board games. Funcom has several licensing agreements in place for the production of these for some of the IPs, and Funcom plans to expand upon that through their subsidiary Heroic Signatures.
In September, Netflix said it will develop a new Conan TV series as a part of a larger deal involving Cabinet Group CEO Fredrik Malmberg and Mark Wheeler from Pathfinder Media. Netflix has exclusive rights to the Conan library for the rights for live-action and animated films and TV shows.
Malmberg will continue as president of Heroic Signatures at Funcom, which counts Tencent as a majority owner.
“We took Cabinet Group as far as we could as an independent studio, but in order to achieve further growth, we were in need of bigger financial investments and infrastructure,” Malmberg said in a statement.
Malmberg cut licensing deals with Penguin Random House, Panini, Titan Books, Monolith, and Funcom to get Conan the Barbarian to reach a new generation of fans around the world. Marvel Entertainment is publishing a new Conan comic book every month, and a Netflix series based on the same IP is also currently in the works.
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