Computer Game Maker Ubisoft to Buy Quebec's Hybride Technologies

French software company Ubisoft, best known for its computer games, is acquiring Hybride Technologies - an 80-employee Quebec-based company that develops tools for creating special-effects in movies, television and advertising. Hybride's projects include such the films Frank Miller's Sin City, 300, and the Spy Kids series.

Ubisoft hasn't announced how much it will pay for the Quebec company but said it is expected to initially generate the equivalent of about $10 million to $11 million in sales. Ubisoft already has a presence in 27 countries including Canada, where it employs more than 1,000 in Quebec. Among the company's game titles is Assassin's Creed for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 and a several best-selling games based on the Tom Clancy spy thriller novels. Hybride will continue to work with its film partners but also bring its expertise to Ubisoft.

"The future of our industry depends on our ability to create brands that captivate audiences and to extend those brands to other forms of entertainment," says Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot. "The acquisition of Hybride falls directly into the strategy that has already led us to open a digital creation studio in Montreal and to acquire the Tom Clancy brand for video games and ancillary products." He added that the teams at Hybride and Ubisoft will enable the company to create "one of the best 3-D animation studios in the entertainment industry." A video montage of both Hybride and Ubisoft projects can be seen here.

For the 2007-08 fiscal year Ubisoft generated sales of 928 million euros - or about C$1.5 billion.

Source: The Canadian Press