3:00pm PT by Carolyn Giardina
THX Sold to Gaming Firm Razer, Eyes Virtual Reality Expansion
THX, the San Francisco-based company that was originally founded by George Lucas in 1983 to improve cinema sound for Return of the Jedi, has been acquired by gaming brand Razer for an undisclosed sum.
Under its new owner, the company, which was spun off from Lucasfilm in 2002, plans to maintain its work in cinemas, the home and mobile, while expanding into new areas of entertainment including virtual and augmented reality.
“This acquisition will allow us to reinforce Razer’s leadership in gaming and extend the brand into broader areas of entertainment, while at the same time empowering THX to develop into a global powerhouse, independently,” Razer co-founder and CEO Min-Liang Tan said Monday in a statement.
Per the agreement, THX’s management and employees will remain with the company, which will operate as an independent entity.
“Our focus has always been on ensuring that anyone can experience high-quality entertainment, regardless of their medium of choice,” said Ty Ahmad-Taylor, CEO of THX. “As a stand-alone company, THX will work with Razer but will primarily continue to service our partners in the industry.”
While THX started in the theatrical arena, its quality assurance certification program has expanded to audio electronics, non-internet-connected speakers, TVs, projectors, automotive audio systems and live entertainment.
Moving forward, plans are to include immersive audio and high dynamic range, introduce programs such as headphone certification and, in the future, expand into augmented and virtual reality.
Razer maintains its U.S. headquarters in Irvine, Calif.