Pop quiz: Who owns Daybreak Game Company? If you answered Columbus Nova, you are as wrong as every news outlet that reported on this three years ago, including MMO Fallout. You would be forgiven for this misunderstanding considering that the news was announced from Daybreak’s PR with the headline “Columbus Nova Acquires Sony Online Entertainment,” with the first sentence straight up saying that Columbus Nova had acquired the company.
Columbus Nova, an investment management firm based in New York, announced today that it has completed its acquisition of Sony Online Entertainment LLC (SOE), a recognized worldwide leader in massively multiplayer online (MMO) games and emergent gameplay.
And then there is John Smedley’s note in the announcement that they would be joining Columbus Nova’s roster of companies.
“We are excited to join Columbus Nova’s impressive roster of companies.”
Turns out that SOE was acquired not by Columbus Nova itself but by an executive at Columbus Nova, Jason Epstein, and the company had just never corrected the record.
“It was current executive chairman Jason Epstein, former senior managing partner of Columbus Nova that acquired Daybreak, not Columbus Nova itself. That distinction was never corrected in the past, so we are correcting that now.”
The reason this is relevant today of all days is because Columbus Nova has become embroiled in US sanctions on Russian oligarchs, specifically its owner Viktor Vekselberg. The distancing between the two companies has been raising a lot of eyebrows since both Daybreak and Jason Epstein himself have said on more than one occasion, and very explicitly, that Columbus Nova as an entity has purchased SOE.