Transaction Brings Highly
Coveted THE MATRIX Franchise and State-of-the-Art Development Studio Under Infogrames
New York, New York, April 25, 2002 -- Infogrames, Inc., a leading publisher of
interactive entertainment software, today announced that it has signed a Purchase
Agreement to acquire Shiny Entertainment, Inc. from Interplay Entertainment Corp. Through
this acquisition, Infogrames will have exclusive worldwide rights to develop and publish
interactive games based on sequels to the highly acclaimed, Academy Award-winning action
thriller, THE MATRIX. The games will be based on the upcoming sequels, THE MATRIX RELOADED
and THE MATRIX REVOLUTIONS from Warner Bros. Pictures. The transaction is expected to
close within one week, following satisfaction of various closing conditions, which include
the execution of other ancillary agreements with various third parties.
Under the terms of the agreement, Infogrames will acquire the full development
operations of Shiny Entertainment and will have exclusive rights to THE MATRIX sequel
games for all major existing platforms, and their successors and replacements; the patent
for Shiny's Advanced Tessellation Technology; and exclusive rights to other tools and
assets associated with the development of THE MATRIX games, for a purchase price of
approximately $47 million (subject to certain adjustments), in a combination of cash and a
promissory note. As part of the transaction, David Perry, founder and President of Shiny
Entertainment, has signed a long-term employment agreement with Infogrames to remain as
President of Shiny. Under Mr. Perrys leadership, Shiny's development team, which now
joins Infogrames, created award-winning titles such as Earthworm Jim, MDK and Sacrifice,
which are published by Interplay. Larry Wachowski and Andy Wachowksi, the creators,
writers and directors of THE MATRIX franchise, have worked closely with Mr. Perry and the
Shiny team on the development of the games.
"To add Shiny and THE MATRIX franchise to our portfolio is a tremendous coup for
Infogrames," said Bruno Bonnell, Chairman and CEO of Infogrames, Inc. "Shiny's
outstanding development team has a proven track record for creating innovative games that
push the envelope, making the studio a wonderful addition to our growing in-house
development team, and underscoring our commitment to assembling the best talent in the
industry under the Infogrames banner."
Shiny Entertainment will join Infogrames, Inc.'s internal development operations, which
currently include: Reflections Interactive (Stuntman, Driver, Driver 2); Legend
Entertainment (Unreal, Unreal Episode 2); Humongous Entertainment (Backyard Sports); and
studio teams in Los Angeles, CA; Beverly, MA; and Minneapolis, MN. In addition, on behalf
of its parent company, Infogrames Entertainment SA, the Company manages Paradigm
Entertainment (Terminator, Mission: Impossible II), and a studio in Hunt Valley, MD, and
represents Eden Studio (V-Rally franchise) and Melbourne House (Men in Black II, Formula
One) in the U.S.
Warner Bros., the studio producing and releasing THE MATRIX films and the licensor for
THE MATRIX game rights, has approved the acquisition and transfer of the license to
Infogrames. The first game Infogrames will release will be THE MATRIX RELOADED, the sequel
to the original blockbuster THE MATRIX. Currently, the game is scheduled for release in
May 2003 in conjunction with the theatrical release of THE MATRIX RELOADED motion picture.
"The revenue potential for THE MATRIX on multiple platforms is tremendous, making
THE MATRIX RELOADED a premier title in our line-up for Fiscal 2003," said Mr.
Bonnell. "THE MATRIX is one of the most desirable franchises within this industry.
Its popularity and cult status are undeniable, and its movie fan base encompasses the
quintessential gaming audience."
Mr. Bonnell continued, "Working closely with David's team at Shiny, we expect to
release the game around the world next May, backed by the full force of our marketing,
advertising and retail operations."
"Infogrames has a legacy of attracting the best development teams in the business
and they've built a reputation for being extremely supportive of creative talent,"
said David Perry, President of Shiny Entertainment. Mr. Perry continued, "We are
thrilled to be joining the Infogrames family, which clearly shares our enthusiasm for and
belief in THE MATRIX franchise."