$49m expansion strengthens games developer’s global ambitions

Global video game developer Team17 is bolstering its wider entertainment offering with the acquisition of the business and assets of StoryToys.

The deal which is the result of an acquisition of StoryToys’ London-based parent company TouchPress Inc is worth an initial consideration of $26.5m (£19.3m) with a further maximum $22.5m (£16.4m) payable in cash on delivery of certain targets within three years following competition of the deal.

StoryToys is a world-class developer and publisher of educational entertainment (edutainment) apps for children that was founded in 2011 and based in Ireland. The deal establishes a “highly complementary” vertical to Team17’s offering and strengthening its position as a leader in the games entertainment industry.

Team17 chief executive Debbie Bestwick

Debbie Bestwick MBE, CEO of Team17, commented: “I am thrilled to be welcoming StoryToys into the Team17 family and believe our shared culture and values perfectly align. In StoryToys, we are acquiring a highly creative and successful team whose ability to both entertain and educate children is truly best in class.

“Their track record is without question but the depth of talent that exists within the business gives us an unrivalled position within a hugely exciting and high growth edutainment area.

“We look forward to working closely with the whole StoryToys team and are delighted to be able to not only support their ambitious growth prospects but to provide a strong and stable platform to accelerate their development. Team17 prides itself on its culture and on embracing ambitious management teams – today’s announcement is an example of how we intend to make that a reality.”

Emmet O’Neill, CEO of StoryToys, added: “Team17 is the perfect home for StoryToys as we enter into this incredible new chapter. Our goal is to be the number one provider of edutainment content for young children. Collaborating with Team17 will make that a faster and more exciting journey.

“We believe in creating the best possible digital learning experiences for children. We look forward to the possibilities that are opened up by collaborating with what we believe to be the best partner to deliver our ambitions.”

This is the latest deal for Team17, which has operations in Wakefield, Nottingham and Manchester, and reported record profits in 2020 having published more games than ever before. The group which is currently valued at close  a billion pounds, expects demand for edutainment apps to continue to increase having accelerated as a result of the pandemic, with forecasts for the global educational apps market predicting over $46billion of growth between 2020 and 2024.

The deal is being funded from the firm’s existing cash reserves and Team17 was advised by a Yorkshire corporate team from Addleshaw Goddard, led by Adam Hastings.