British company is leading developer of racing games

LONDON — Buena Vista Games, Disney’s interactive division, has bought British video games specialist Climax Racing.

Company said the purchase of the award-winning studio, which employs around 100 video game artists, programmers and designers, is strategically and geographically important becomes it is the third internal studio and the first in Europe that BVG has added to its development capacity.

BVG already operates development studios in Vancouver, British Columbia (Propaganda Games), and Salt Lake City, Utah (Avalanche Software).

Disney declined to comment on how much it has paid for the combo.

Said Graham Hopper, senior vice president and general manager, Buena Vista Games: “The acquisition of Climax Racing aligns perfectly with our strategic and geographic goals by allowing us to both reach into new genres and new markets for creative talent.

“Adding Climax Racing to our creative family will provide an additional catalyst for our continued growth in the video games market.”

Climax Racing is regarded as a leading developer of racing games, including its work on the best-selling franchises “MotoGP” and “ATV Offroad Fury.”

Tony Beckwith, co-founder of the studio, has been tapped as vice president and general manager of the outfit under its new ownership.

He said: “The Walt Disney Company holds one of the largest and most exciting portfolio of intellectual property in the world, and through BVG, we look forward to having access to the company’s deep resources in the video games space to continue creating remarkable interactive entertainment.”

Climax’s studio operates from Brighton on Blighty’s south coast while its HQ is in Portsmouth, the naval town also on the south coast.

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