In a statement released earlier today, Japanese publisher Square Enix have made a bombshell announcement regarding the future of IO Interactive. Citing an aim to “maximise player satisfaction”, the veteran publisher have “regrettably decided to withdraw from the business of IO INTERACTIVE”.
The shocking news concerning the Danish developer comes hot on the heels of financial disclosures from Square Enix earlier in the day, detailing record profits and sales across the company.
Whether IO Interactive is being shuttered or sold is not made clear in the document. Square Enix’s statement draws reference to looking for “potential new investors”, but also states that a sale is not a certainty.
“Whilst there can be no guarantees that the negotiations will be concluded successfully, they are being explored since this is in the best interests of our shareholders, the studio and the industry as a whole.” – Linked Statement
The future of both IO Interactive and the Hitman IP are up in the air. Hitman received widespread critical acclaim across 2016, with plans for a second season of DLC slated.
IO Interactive was established in 1998, before being purchased by Eidos Interactive in 2003. Eidos was purchased by Square Enix in 2009.