Research Outline

Earnout Period for Video Game Company Sales


To determine the length of the earnout period for a minimum of ten video game companies sold in the last two years, in order to determine what the "typical" earnout period is.

Early Findings

Embracer Group

  • Several subsidiaries of Embracer Group bought a total of eight video game firms, some of which included earnout periods. These deals were announced in August 2020.
    • Saber Interactive acquired 4A Games Limited. The deal was for $25 million with up to an additional $35 million paid as an earnout within five years.
    • Amplifier Game Invest purchased Vermilia Studios for €900,000 ($1.095 million) with up to an additional €2 million ($2.434 million) payable if Vermilia grosses €30 million ($36.516 million) or more within 10 years.
    • The purchase of Pallindrome Interactive was purchase with an earnout period of 5-10 years.
    • "Austrian multiplayer developer Rare Earth Games, bought in full by Amplifier Game Invest for €300,000m [($365,000)], with a maximum earnout consideration of €3m [($3.65 million)] payable within ten years."
    • " Full acquisition of German live operations and mobile service provider DECA Live Operations GmbH for an upfront consideration of €25m [($30.442 million)] in Class B shares, plus a maximum of €60m [($73.061 million)] in earnout considerations tied to “significant growth” over the following seven years."

Toadman Interactive


  • Codemasters bought Slightly Mad Studios for $30 million upfront with an earnout period of three years that could result in a higher payout.

THQ Nordic

Summary of Findings

  • In the initial hour of research, we were able to find eight sales of video game companies in the past two years that had earnouts in the contract. The earnout periods for these sales were 5 years, 10 years, 5-10 years, 10 years, 7 years, 1 year, 3 years, and 2 years.
  • Although we ran out of time to add more, our initial research leads us to believe that additional sales that include earnout provisions can be found.