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Midway Games acquires LA Rush developer

Midway has acquired UK-based The Pitbull Syndicate to work on future racing games in a primarily stock-based transaction.

Midway Games has acquired Newcastle, UK-based developer The Pitbull Syndicate in a primarily stock-based transaction that will see the company rebranded Midway Studios - Newcastle.

The deal is worth 199,385 Midway shares, subject to potential customary post-closing adjustments, and Midway also issued 25,146 restricted shares of common stock to key employees as retention incentives.

The publisher has been collaborating with Pitbull on its reinvention of the LA Rush franchise, and the developer has previously worked on a number of Test Drive titles, helping that series to amass sales of over 5.5 million units during its lifespan.

Pitbull is also working on next generation projects for Midway, the publisher said.

"LA Rush will be the first title in our co-marketing relationship with MTV, and we are excited to add the creative force behind this title to our expanding internal development staff," said David Zucker, Midway CEO and president.

"Pitbull will form the foundation of Midway's future racing games, and we are excited to expand our international presence in one of the strongest regions for game development talent in the UK," said senior vice president of worldwide studios Matt Booty, who believes Pitbull has "mastered the art and science of arcade-style racers".

Established in late 1996 by a small group of programmers and artists, Pitbull has focused almost exclusively on racing titles - including four games in the Test Drive series, which rights-holder Atari is currently in the process of reinventing for Xbox 360.

Pitbull employees who received retention incentives as part of the acquisition were named as Pete Brace, Ian Copeland, Gavin Freyberg, Jonathan Kay, Daren Kelly, Mark Leadbeater, Ben Marsh, Chris McClure, Stewart Neal, Mark Wilkinson, and Chris Wood.

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Tom Bramwell

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Tom worked at Eurogamer from early 2000 to late 2014, including seven years as Editor-in-Chief.