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        DWF advises international games business on 27m acquisition

        International legal business DWF has advised Keywords Studios on its $27 million acquisition of Sperasoft Inc and Sperasoft Studio LLC, a strategic purchase that will enable the global games provider to continue its growth plans.

        Date: 18/12/2017

        AIM-listed Keywords Studios, a Dublin-based company which provides technical solutions to the video games industry, has been on an ambitious growth trajectory in recent years. The business has taken advantage of the highly fragmented video games market to make selective acquisitions in order to extend its business lines into key international markets. With this most recent acquisition, whilst adding expertise to the group's engineering services and art creation businesses, Keywords also gains an entry point into co-development, positioning the group as a strategic partner to games developers at the early stages of the games development lifecycle. The deal also sees Keywords acquire three new international studios, in St Petersburg, Volgograd and Krakow.

        DWF provided cross-border advice on the complex transaction that reflects the growing capability and geographical reach of the legal business's expertise. The team was led by London Head of Corporate Matthew Doughty alongside corporate Partner Patrick Eaton and solicitor Sophie Morris.

        DWF has advised Keywords on a number of transactions this year, including its $66 million acquisition of VMC Consulting Corporation and related £75 million placing; the acquisition of three Paris-based audio and localisation companies in August 2017, transactions led by DWF's Paris office; and the $6 million acquisition of a graphical art asset production company that enabled Keywords to expand into the broader Chinese market, a key commercial region for the video games industry.

        Matthew Doughty, DWF's London Head of Corporate, said: "Keywords is an exceptionally ambitious business, and its customer-centric view and desire to enhance its capability has led to a number of strategic acquisitions this year. We are pleased to have been able to advise Keywords on this latest development, and that our growing international presence and investment in building cross-border expertise is allowing us to deliver real value to clients who are looking to expand into new jurisdictions."

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