Sony Acquire Socom Devs Zipper Interactive

Sony Computer Entertainment announced today that leading game developer and long-time partner Zipper Interactive, creators of the top-selling SOCOM U.S. Navy SEALs franchise, joins its newly formed global development operation, SCE Worldwide Studios. In an effort to further its commitment to long-term creative excellence in game development on PlayStation platforms, the addition of Zipper Interactive marks the second studio acquisition by SCE following Guerrilla in December 2005.

Based in Redmond Zipper Interactive is the award-winning developer of the SOCOM U.S. Navy SEALs series for both the PlayStation2 computer entertainment system and the PSP) system, with franchise sales of all SOCOM titles surpassing seven million units worldwide. As the breakthrough online franchise on PlayStation 2, the critically acclaimed SOCOM series has consistently ranked number one within the platform portfolio across all global markets. Building on an already strong and close working relationship between Zipper and Sony Computer Entertainment America, the two companies have signed an exclusive development agreement in January 2006. This move brings a studio well known for technology innovation formally into the PlayStation family and becomes a key creative force of SCE Worldwide Studios. Its day-to-day operations will continue to be run SCE WWS Foster City Studio. Financial terms of this arrangement are not disclosed.

Zipper Interactive is one of the most well-known and respected development teams in the industry and we have enjoyed a great working relationship with the company since July 1999,” said Phil Harrison, president, SCE Worldwide Studios. “Zipper’s tremendous achievements and expertise in creating top-selling games with fantastically loyal online communities is a great addition to our development organization. We are delighted that Zipper Interactive is now a core member of the SCE Worldwide Studios network.

We were first drawn to Sony Computer Entertainment by their vision for growing the video game industry,” said Jim Bosler, president and CEO, Zipper Interactive. “We’ve enjoyed an incredible relationship with SCE for more than six years. This has allowed us to combine our cutting edge technical and design capabilities with SCE’s creative insights and extraordinary support to become the leader in the online console multiplayer field. As a part of the Sony Computer Entertainment group we can look forward to introducing innovative titles that push online functionality and community experiences even further.