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Midway Acquires UK Developer The Pitbull Syndicate

by Rainier on Oct. 4, 2005 @ 3:47 a.m. PDT

Midway announced today that it has acquired UK development studio The Pitbull Syndicate Limited, now named Midway Studios - Newcastle. The studio is currently developing Midway's racing title L.A. RUSH along with additional next generation projects.

Midway's President and Chief Executive Officer, David F. Zucker, commented, "We have been collaborating with Pitbull on the upcoming reinvention of our RUSH franchise, L.A. RUSH, which we anticipate will be launching in October. This close-knit team of highly talented developers brings to Midway a successful track record, specifically the Test Drive series, of which three titles have sold over one million units. L.A. 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."

Midway's Senior Vice President - Worldwide Studios, Matt Booty, said, "Pitbull has mastered the art and science of arcade-style racers, with sophisticated technology that allows huge free-roaming environments, hundreds of destructible objects, and an advanced artificial intelligence system capable of handling more than 100 vehicles at once. 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."

Based in Newcastle, UK, The Pitbull Syndicate Limited was established in December 1996 by a small group of programmers and artists who specialize in racing games, producing four games in the Test Drive series, which has sold over 5.5 million units throughout the life of the franchise.

In addition to shares issued as consideration for the acquisition of Pitbull, 25,146 restricted shares of Midway common stock were issued to key Pitbull employees as retention incentives. The restrictions on the shares will lapse over a period of three years, provided the employee remains at the Company. Pitbull employees who received the rights were: 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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