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Ubisoft takes full ownership of Anno developer Related Designs

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Ubisoft fully acquired Related Designs, one of the studios behind the publisher's Anno series of real-time strategy games, the publisher announced today.

The French publisher already owned 29.95 percent of Related Designs, a stake that came from its 2007 acquisition of Sunflowers Interactive Entertainment Software, and the company recently purchased the remaining 70.05 percent in cash. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Mainz, Germany-based Related Designs was founded in 1995, and its recent history includes work as the developer or co-developer on three Anno titles: Anno 1701, Anno 1404 and Anno 2070. Under Ubisoft, the 65-person team at Related Designs will continue its partnership with Ubisoft Blue Byte, with which it worked on the two most recent Anno games, for Might and Magic Heroes Online and future titles.

"This extremely fruitful cooperation can now advance thanks to the joint teams of Blue Byte and Related Designs more easily sharing experiences and resources. Together we will continue developing awesome games, including Might and Magic Heroes Online, which we hope will become a leading free-to-play title for Ubisoft," said Odile Limpach, managing director of Ubisoft Blue Byte, in a press release announcing the acquisition.

"We're happy to formally join Ubisoft," said Thomas Pottkämper, managing director of Related Designs, in the press release. "This move validates our longstanding partnership and provides our teams with additional resources to expand upon their great work."

You can check out a preview of Might and Magic Heroes Online, a browser-based free-to-play MMO, here.

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