PlayStation announces Discord partnership, weeks after Microsoft buyout offer was ‘declined’
Messaging platform will be connected with PlayStation consoles early next year
PlayStation has announced a partnership with messaging platform Discord, weeks after the firm reportedly turned down an acquisition offer from rival Microsoft.
Sony Interactive Entertainment announced on Monday that it had made a minority investment in the company which will see its platform connected with PlayStation consoles early next year.
“Together, our teams are already hard at work connecting Discord with your social and gaming experience on PlayStation Network,” SIE president Jim Ryan said in a statement.
“Our goal is to bring the Discord and PlayStation experiences closer together on console and mobile starting early next year, allowing friends, groups, and communities to hang out, have fun, and communicate more easily while playing games together.
“To bring these experiences to life for our players, Sony Interactive Entertainment has made a minority investment as part of Discord’s Series H round.
“From our very first conversation with co-founders Jason Citron and Stan Vishnevskiy, I was inspired by their lifelong love for gaming and our teams’ shared passion to help bring friends and communities together in new ways.
“Empowering players to create communities and enjoy shared gaming experiences is at the heart of what we do, so we are beyond excited to start this journey with one of the world’s most popular communication services.”
According to multiple reports in the business press, Microsoft was in talks to purchase Discord for around $10 billion earlier this year. According to Bloomberg, the messaging platform turned down the offer in April to focus on a potential public listing in the long term.
Discord was founded in 2015 as a platform for video game players to chat while playing online. Today, it has over 140 million monthly users, with many communities dedicated to a range of topics related to gaming and beyond.
The platform received a rebrand last summer as the company attempted to move away from its focus on gaming and attract a wider audience.
According to an Ampere analysis of Microsoft’s potential Discord deal, any console platform holder partnering with Discord would gain access commercially valuable, enthusiast gamers that are active on devices beyond their core reach.
“Less than half of all US Discord users across our survey consider themselves to be console gamers and users have a much higher-than-average propensity to play games ‘away from the house’,” wrote research director Piers Harding-Rolls.
“Ampere’s survey data shows that 79% of 16-64-year-old PS4 and PS4 Pro users in the US have used Discord in the last year. Acquiring Discord would give Microsoft better insight into how gamers are playing on non-Microsoft devices and, crucially, own the platform on which many third-party brands are engaging with gamers through their own community efforts.”