Square Enix has announced that it is selling Danish developer IO Interactive (the studio behind the Hitman franchise) due to Square Enix's refocusing of "resources and energies on key franchises and studios."

The most recent Hitman title was scrutinized due to the changing of its release model, which started as an amorphous rollout of additional content for a base game and changed to an episodes/seasons structure. Nonetheless, the full first season of content wasn't a hit.

IO Interactive planned to have three seasons of Hitman, but as of last fall the second season wasn't officially confirmed.

Square Enix acquired IO Interactive when the Japanese publisher bought Eidos in 2009.

[Source: Square Enix]

 

Our Take
This is unfortunate not only for the potentially precarious situation this puts IO Interactive and its employees in, but given how Square Enix has already re-organized around its upcoming Marvel titles, I believe you would have needed franchises like Hitman to create a more diverse portfolio. But perhaps this isn't surprising given the company's previous example of shortsightedness when it comes to its Western studios and their titles.