What does a famous computer gain by buying a pixel-based game?
It is practically impossible for Microsoft to recover in a short period of time the almost 2,000 million euros that the purchase of Minecraft has cost. However, that was not the objective of the US multinational when a couple of days ago announced the acquisition of Mojang, the Swedish studio responsible for this popular construction video game.
In strictly economic terms, when Microsoft says they expect this operation to “reach its break-even point during fiscal year 2015″, they are not referring to recovering the total volume of the investment but to reach a threshold of profitability in which neither earn nor lose money .
The acquisition of technology companies by other larger corporations with many liquid assets and the need to expand capital is a very common practice nowadays. Only then can be understood that Microsoft has paid almost 2,000 million euros for a company that entered 250 million euros during 2013.
As market analyst Michael Pachter points out , Microsoft “is going to make more money with Minecraft than they could lose by having the money in the bank generating interest, which is not much.” Thus, instead of letting the money remain generated interest in the accounts of the company is invested in a company that is expected to be able to give benefits over them; or what is the same, “make money work for you”.
To all this, despite the fact that the Minecraft phenomenon is far from over, it might seem that the purchase of Mojang by Microsoft at a time when the game has already sold more than 50 million units comes a little late. However, the game created by the Swedish Markus Persson , known by his followers as “Notch”, is much more than that.
Minecraft is the best rated independent franchise and a game that before going on sale in 2009 had already sold more than a million units in its beta version, but it is also much more. This world of colored cubes is also a huge community of players dedicated almost exclusively to this game, it is one of the most used games by teachers in schools , it is the most popular on YouTube , it is a genre in itself that does not to grow thanks to the modifications introduced by the users themselves. And, of course, it is also a merchandising machine that even has its own fan conventions, such as Minecon.
Microsoft has not simply bought a game, but something much bigger. With the acquisition of Mojang, he controls a surprisingly small study for the income he generates -working about forty people- and he has in his hands the future of what is probably the most projected franchise in the current videogame industry. However, what the money of the company directed by Satya Nadella has not been able to buy is the charismatic Notch , who coinciding with the announcement of the purchase revealed that he would leave the company that he had founded to return to devote himself to his true vocation, which is to create games.