Joe and Anthony Russo’s production company AGBO received a $ 400 million investment stake from Nexon Co., a Tokyo-listed video game company, valuing AGBO at $ 1.1 billion.
Nexon is known for its online games and virtual worlds and is behind its “Dungeon & Fighter” franchise that is wildly popular in China and Korea. Nexon’s investment will support AGBO’s development, production and ownership of movies and shows, as well as games, but will also allow Nexon to accelerate and expand its existing intellectual property under the agreement. And if requested by AGBO, Nexon will also commit an additional $ 100 million in the first half of 2022.
Nexon will now take a 38% stake in AGBO and become the company’s largest individual shareholder, and Nick van Dyk, the chairman of the game company’s film and television division, will also be added to the board of directors of AGBO, like Nexon Film. and Senior Vice President of TV Tim Connors. They join the Russo brothers and AGBO CEO Jason Bergsman on the company’s board of directors.
It is a significant investment by a purely games company in the film and television space and is the latest example of an Asian company advancing in the American entertainment space. Nexon, with this investment, is committed to the continuous fusion of games, films and television in the coming years.
“AGBO is driven by creatives who aspire to work on a universal scale. AGBO’s partnership with Nexon represents a significant juncture for entertainment, promoting the convergence of franchise filming and gaming with a global reach, ”the Russo brothers said in a statement. “Our collaboration builds on our shared vision for the future of storytelling and utilizes the unique talents of both companies.”
“Today’s announcement strengthens AGBO’s core strategy of embracing and incubating intellectual property that engages audiences on all screens through both linear and interactive narratives,” Bergsman said. “Capital from this investment, complemented by access to Nexon’s best gaming capabilities, will provide AGBO with new resources to innovate and pursue growth as an independent entertainment company run exclusively by creators.”
“This investment provides a significant accelerator for our founding mission at AGBO: delighting audiences around the world with ambitious stories told across all media,” added Mike Larocca, co-founder of AGBO.
“Film and television have been shown to generate greater engagement and longevity for game franchises, and we are now partnered with the best franchise IP creators and adapters in film and television,” Nick van Dyk, President of Film and Nexon television and chief strategy officer. Nexon officer said. “We are delighted to be working with AGBO to design universes that, from the very beginning, are intended to coexist in games, movies, television, merchandising and other experiences.”
AGBO’s next step is to make a sequel to their Netflix action hit “Extraction,” starring Chris Hemsworth, and they’re also behind another Russian-directed Netflix movie called “The Gray Man” which will be a thriller starring. Chris Evans and Ryan. Gosling. AGBO is also working on “The Electric State”, a new universe play for NBCUniversal, featuring a film written by Markus and McFeely and directed by the Russo brothers, as well as a companion television series created by Markus and McFeely. They also have the “Citadel” TV universe for Amazon Prime, starring Priyanka Chopra and Richard Madden.
PJT Partners acted as financial advisor to AGBO and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher, and Flom LLP acted as legal counsels to AGBO. Loeb and Loeb served as Nexon’s legal advisers.
The Wall Street Journal first reported the news.