Microsoft buys game developer Rare

Microsoft has acquired British game developer Rare, a Nintendo executive confirmed Friday.

Nintendo said in a statement that it has sold its 49 percent interest in Rare--developer of games based on popular Nintendo franchises such as Donkey Kong--but declined to name the buyer or price.

But Peter MacDougall, executive vice president at Nintendo of America, confirmed to CNET News.com that the sale was part of Rare's acquisition by Microsoft, which now owns Nintendo's 49 percent stake and Rare's majority share.

"The entire company has been sold to Microsoft," he said.

Microsoft has not announced the Rare purchase, and a company representative declined to comment on the deal. The acquisition has been the subject of numerous reports, estimating the buy at anywhere from $400 million to $540 million.

Schelley Olhava, an analyst for research firm IDC, said the type of family-friendly games Rare creates are exactly what Microsoft needs to broaden the appeal of the Xbox beyond hardcore gamers.

News source: CNET

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