Posted on September 15, 2014, Ron Whitaker Mojang Confirms Sale to Microsoft, Notch Leaving
UPDATE: Microsoft’s Head of Xbox, Phil Spencer, has confirmed the deal as well, writing in a post on Xbox.com. Spencer wrote that Microsoft plans to continue supporting Minecraft on all platforms, and that Minecon will also take place next year.
ORIGINAL STORY: Mojang has confirmed what was rumored last week – they’re being bought by Microsoft.
Owen Hill, Mojang’s Chief Word Officer, says in a blog post on the company’s official site that Microsoft is indeed acquiring the Minecraft developer, saying simply, “Yes, the deal is real. Mojang is being bought by Microsoft.” Most people, though, are wondering why. According to the post,
“Minecraft has grown from a simple game to a project of monumental significance. Though we’re massively proud of what Minecraft has become, it was never Notch’s intention for it to get this big.”
Furthermore, Hill also confirms the rumor that Markuss “Notch” Persson, along with the other founders of the company, will be leaving when the sale if finalized.
“Though it’s too early to confirm which of us will continue working on Minecraft or other projects, we predict that the vast majority (if not all) Mojangstas will continue to work at Mojang for the time being.
The founders: Notch, Carl, and Jakob are leaving. We don’t know what they’re planning. It won’t be Minecraft-related but it will probably be cool.”
Why would Notch leave the company he helped build? It’s just gotten too big. According to the post. Persson has, “decided that he doesn’t want the responsibility of owning a company of such global significance. Over the past few years he’s made attempts to work on smaller projects, but the pressure of owning Minecraft became too much for him to handle.”
Finally, the amount of the acquisition was confirmed as well, with Hill saying that, “Microsoft acquired Mojang for a smooth 2.5 BILLION dollars.”
That’s a whole lot of money, but it’s not surprising, considering that Minecraft has transitioned from a game into a cultural phenomenon. We discussed this possibility on last week’s podcast, so we’re not terribly shocked that this turned out be true. We’ll keep you updated on the story as more information becomes available.