D&D Beyond is leveling up! The online digital toolset and game companion for Dungeons & Dragons fifth edition is being acquired by entertainment company Hasbro and its subsidiary Wizards of the Coast. They have already confirmed that they have no plans to stop supporting the platform.
D&D Beyond hosts online versions of the official Dungeons & Dragons fifth editions books, including rulebooks, adventures, and other supplements; provides digital tools such as a character builder and online character sheets, monster and spell listings, and an encounter builder; and includes an interactive overlay Twitch Extension used by many players. D&D Beyond is the leading toolset in the growing online Dungeons & Dragons arena.
Previously, D&D Beyond was officially licensed by Hasbro, but owned by Fandom, Inc. Dungeons & Dragons has been published by Wizards of the Coast, now a subsidiary of Hasbro, since 1997. Welcoming D&D Beyond to the party as well just makes sense.
“Dungeons & Dragons and D&D Beyond have always felt like a part of the same family,” the announcement on the official D&D website begins. “That’s why we are excited to welcome everyone at D&D Beyond to formally join us at Wizards of the Coast, bringing together two teams dedicated to continuing to make Dungeons & Dragons easy to run and accessible to all!”
The entirety of D&D Beyond is being acquired from Fandom, Inc. for $146.3 million in cash.
The site had humble beginnings, initially created by Curse LLC and launched in 2017, before Fandom, Inc. took over all of Curse’s assets in 2018. Fandom have grown D&D Beyond to a true behemoth in the digital ttrpg world since then.
D&D Beyond has nearly 10 million users, and the royalty that Fandom paid to Hasbro over the last three years has greatly contributed to the Dungeons & Dragons brand’s eighth consecutive year of growth in 2021.
While this is likely a great financial move for Hasbro, it will also add veteran talents to the Wizards of the Coast team, hopefully benefitting players and fans across all platforms by bringing on a team of 80 passionate creators across the US and Europe.
This very strategic acquisition will deliver Hasbro a direct relationship with fans, providing valuable, data-driven insights into their players games, characters, and habits — allowing them to unlock opportunities for growth in new product development, live services and tools, and regional expansions. As part of Wizards, the brand’s leadership will soon be able to drive a unified, player-centric vision of the world’s greatest role-playing game on all platforms.
Within the official press release to Business Wire, leaders of the involved parties had the following to say:
“The acquisition of D&D Beyond will accelerate our progress in both gaming and direct to consumer, two priority areas of growth for Hasbro, providing immediate access to a loyal, growing player base,” said Chris Cocks, Hasbro Chief Executive Officer. “Hasbro’s gaming portfolio is among the largest and most profitable in the industry, and we continue to make strategic investments to grow our brands, including in digital.”
“This is the perfect next step for the talented D&D Beyond team, who built a transformative digital product that engaged and delighted millions of D&D fans around the world,” said Perkins Miller, CEO of Fandom. “We can’t wait to see what this team will do next as an integral part of the D&D franchise, and I look forward to investing in more brands and products to super serve Fandom’s 300 million+ global fans.”
“D&D Beyond has been one of our most valuable partners in the digital space for the past six years and we’re excited to bring their best-in-class talent onto our team,” said Cynthia Williams, President of Wizards of the Coast and Digital Gaming. “The team at D&D Beyond has built an incredible digital platform, and together we will deliver the best-possible DUNGEONS & DRAGONS experience for players around the world.”
The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and the receipt of certain regulatory approvals, and is expected to close during the second or third quarter of 2022.