Autodesk buys 3-D firm


Autodesk has signed an agreement to acquire substantially all the assets of Skymatter Limited, the New Zealand-based developer of Mudbox 3-D modeling software. The transaction is expected to close in the next two months.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"Entertainment and design markets are demanding more integrated technology workflows as well as increased realism and sophistication," said Marc Petit, senior vp at Autodesk Media & Entertainment. "In order to create advanced digital characters and models, 3-D artists are relying on Skymatter's Mudbox software, along with Autodesk's 3-D solutions. By acquiring Skymatter, Autodesk will be able to offer a more complete solution for film, television and game pipelines as well as new workflows for other design disciplines, such as automotive and industrial design."

Per the agreement, Skymatter founders and CG veterans Andrew Camenisch, Dave Cardwell and Tibor Madjar will join Autodesk's Media & Entertainment business. They, along with the Skymatter operations, will relocate to Autodesk's Toronto offices, the prime R&D hub for Autodesk's 3-D software Maya.

Mudbox offers what Skymatter calls "3-D brush-based modeling," allowing users to sculpt organic shapes in 3-D space with brush-like tools so that it could be useful to traditional sculptors as well as digital artists.