Embracer Group becomes new Lord of the Rings rightsholder amid acquisition spree

Eleni Thomas
Embracer Group Tolkien IP

Gaming and entertainment company Embracer Group have revealed they will become the new rights holder to all things Middle Earth, securing an agree to The Lord of The Rings, Hobbit and all J.R.R. Tolkien IP from The Saul Zaentz Company who held it for nearly 50 years.

In the past 10 years, Embracer Group has slowly but surely been on a mission to acquire as many gaming studios and companies as they can. In their quest, the Swedish holding company has purchased many notable gaming studios that include the likes of Crystal Dynamics, THQ, Pieces Interactive, Gearbox as well as many more.

Now it appears as though they are set to make their biggest acquisition yet, with a press release from August 18 detailing how Embracer Group is looking to purchase the rights to one of the biggest fantasy empires of all time, The Lord of the Rings.

In doing so, they acquire the rights to all works under the iconic title’s IP, as well as all other J.R.R. Tolkien works, through the Middle-earth Enterprises division.

“I am truly excited to have The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, one of the world’s most epic fantasy franchises join the Embracer family, opening up more transmedia opportunities including synergies across our global group,” Lars Wingefors, Founder and Group CEO of Embracer Group, said.

COO of The Saul Zaentz Company, Marty Glick, who have held the rights since 1976, then added his statement and expressed how “thrilled” he is to see Embracer taking on the Tolkien rights.

The exact cost of this acquisition has not been revealed yet. However it comes as part of a spending spree from Embracer Group, who announced the acquisitions of four other brands including Tuxedo Labs, Tripwire Interactive, Singtrix, and Limited Run Games.

A sixth acquisition has also been made, but is yet to be announced. The total cost is around $575 million USD.

The Lord of The Rings already has a hotly anticipating TV show, Rings of Power, in the works with Amazon. With Embracer Group now taking over the rights to the franchise, The Lord of The Rings and other Tolkien IP could see even more gaming, TV, and movie content being developed in the near future.

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