Sony to acquire U.S. gaming firm Bungie for $3.6 billion

© Kyodo News

Sony Group Corp.'s videogame unit said Monday it will acquire U.S. company Bungie Inc., the developer of the popular "Destiny" shooting game series, for $3.6 billion.

Sony Interactive Entertainment LLC said in a statement that the acquisition will give it access to Bungie's "world-class approach to live game services and technology expertise," in a move that will further intensify competition in the gaming industry.

The news followed the announcement by Microsoft Corp., the maker of Xbox game consoles, earlier in January that it plans to buy "Call of Duty" game creator Activision Blizzard Inc. for $68.7 billion.

Bungie, which is based in Bellevue in the state of Washington, will become an independent subsidiary of Sony Interactive Entertainment, according to the statement. Sony produces PlayStation games and consoles.

"This is an important step in our strategy to expand the reach of PlayStation to a much wider audience. We understand how vital Bungie's community is to the studio and look forward to supporting them as they remain independent and continue to grow," said Jim Ryan, president and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment.