9 September 2021

BDA advises Baring Private Equity Asia on US$150m investment into Virtuos

Invested $150m in Virtuos

2021

Virtuos, a leading global game development company (“Virtuos” or the “Company”), announced that funds affiliated with Baring Private Equity Asia (“BPEA”) have invested US$150 million in the Company. Following this investment, BPEA will become the largest external shareholder in Virtuos which will continue to operate under the leadership of CEO Gilles Langourieux who, together with the rest of the management team, still owns over 70% of the Company.

Founded in 2004 and headquartered in Singapore, Virtuos is a global company with Asian roots. Since its inception, Virtuos has built a unique value proposition around art production and game development services, progressively climbing the value chain to become a specialist in delivering integrated end-to-end game development solutions for some of the industry’s most successful game franchises. The Company has grown to become a global leader in digital production services for video game development and now operates in 13 locations across Asia, North America, and Europe. 

Virtuos has built a strong reputation as the partner of choice for video game publishers and developers globally. It currently works with 18 of the world’s top 20 digital entertainment companies including Activision Blizzard, Bandai Namco, Take Two Interactive, and Ubisoft, and has been involved in some of the industry’s most successful game titles, including Assassin’s Creed, Call of Duty, Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age, Horizon Zero Dawn, League of Legends, NBA 2K18, and Shadow of The Tomb Raider. Virtuos has also contributed art services to some of the film industry’s biggest blockbuster franchises such as Black Panther, Jurassic World, The Avengers, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. 

Janice Leow, Managing Director at BPEA, will be appointed to the Virtuos Board, where she will bring her expertise in mobilizing BPEA’s framework for creating value at growing companies. “Virtuos has achieved a number of impressive milestones in a short space of time and we are delighted to support the business at such an exciting stage in its growth journey,” said Leow. “The gaming industry has tremendous potential for growth. Virtuos’ diverse and loyal client base, deep global talent pool, inclusive and innovative workplace culture, and long track record of partnering with clients to develop some of the world’s most popular games, positions it well to achieve strong growth in the years ahead.” 

“The gaming industry and demand for its content continue to grow rapidly, and so will Virtuos as one of the largest entertainment content creators worldwide with over 2,300 employees spread across three continents,” said Gilles Langourieux, CEO of Virtuos. “This investment from BPEA, which has a long history of supporting and growing Asian-based companies, will ensure that we stay at the forefront of AAA content development and deliver high value-added services in full game co-development and end-to-end art production, and continue to be the trusted partner for publishers and developers in developing blockbuster games.” 

“We are excited for our next phase of growth with BPEA’s support,” said Jasmine Cheong, CFO of Virtuos. “Alongside the expansion of our existing studios, the acquisition and establishment of new studios will allow us to expand our global footprint and offerings, enabling us to better meet the needs of our network of partners and leading publishers worldwide.” 

The investment from BPEA will support Virtuos in its next phase of accelerated growth and finance its buy-and-build strategy across different geographies through strategic partnerships and acquisitions. The investment will also underpin the growth of Virtuos’ digital platform and the digitalization of its production platforms across its global studio network, improving productivity and scaling its ability to innovate and deliver bigger and better games for more hardware. 

BPEA was advised by BDA Partners and Virtuos was advised by Lincoln International.

About Baring Private Equity Asia

Baring Private Equity Asia is one of the largest private alternative investment firms in Asia, with assets under management of USD27 billion. BPEA manages a private equity investment program, sponsoring buyouts and providing growth capital to companies for expansion or acquisitions with a particular focus on the Asia Pacific region, as well as dedicated funds focused on private real estate and private credit. The firm has a 24-year history and over 210 employees located across offices in Hong Kong, Singapore, China, India, Japan, Australia, and the US.

BPEA is a responsible investor that seeks to create value for all stakeholders through a sustainable approach to investing. The Firm is a signatory to the UNPRI (United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment) and is committed to action within its own business and the companies in which it invests to drive sustainability across a range of issues, from climate change to social concerns to effective governance. For more information, please visit www.bpeasia.com.

About Virtuos

Founded in 2004, Virtuos is a leading global video game development company headquartered in Singapore with studios across Asia, Europe, and North America. With over 2,300 full-time professionals, Virtuos specializes in game development and 3D art production for AAA consoles, PC, and mobile titles, enabling its partners to generate additional revenues and achieve greater operational efficiency.

For over a decade, Virtuos has successfully delivered high-quality content for more than 1,300 projects and its clients include 18 of the top 20 digital entertainment companies worldwide. More information at www.virtuosgames.com.

About BDA

BDA Partners is the global investment banking advisor for Asia. We are a premium provider of Asia-related advice to sophisticated clients globally, with 25 years’ experience advising on cross-border M&A, capital raising, and financial restructuring. We provide global reach with our teams in New York and London, and true regional depth through our seven Asian offices in Mumbai, Singapore, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Seoul and Tokyo. BDA has deep expertise in the Chemicals, Consumer & Retail, Health, Industrials, Services and Technology sectors. We work relentlessly to earn our clients’ trust by delivering insightful advice and outstanding outcomes. BDA Partners has strategic partnerships with William Blair, a premier global investment banking business, and with DBJ (Development Bank of Japan), a Japanese government-owned bank with US$150bn of assets.

US securities transactions are performed by BDA Partners’ affiliate, BDA Advisors Inc., a broker-dealer registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). BDA Advisors Inc. is a member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and SIPC. In the UK, BDA Partners is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). In Hong Kong, BDA Partners (HK) Ltd. is licensed and regulated by the Securities & Futures Commission (SFC) to conduct Type 1 and Type 4 regulated activities to professional investors.  www.bdapartners.com