Tag Archives: takeover
Fri, Aug 22, 2008 | 06:15 BST
Well, that was quick. The Federal Trade Commission is done snooping around EA and Take-Two, and has given the merger its approval.
Now, barring any issues that the FTC feels “public interest” may be against, Take-Two’s belligerence is the only force standing between Take-Two and EA’s mighty jaws.
The two companies are currently in talks, so we’ll see how that goes.
Tue, Aug 19, 2008 | 09:39 BST
EA’s announced that it won’t extend its deadline to buy Take-Two after its current deadline lapses tonight, saying that it doesn’t believe it could integrate the firm in time for Christmas if things drag on any longer.
Take-Two shares fell nearly 6 percent in premarket trade to $23.38 today.
The news comes after weekend talks between EA chief John Riccitiello and Take-Two chairman Strauss Zelnick.
EA has said it will see a three-year plan presentation from Take-Two, but that it’s five-times-renewed tender offer will drop tonight.
So that’s the end of that. For now.
Wed, Aug 06, 2008 | 16:01 BST
Speaking exclusively to VG247, Massive Entertainment’s senior execs have revealed that they’re already in talks for a potential sale of the World in Conflict developer, following now-confirmed news that Activision is to sell the outfit as a result of its merger with Blizzard.
“It seems like we have plenty of options,” said company president and founder Martin Walfisz, talking at Develop last week. “We’ve had some good meetings here.”
He added: “Being a part of a merger like this is a strange situation, because obviously the new organisation has to look over all of its assets, everything it owns and its strategy for the future. For the past six month’s we’ve been waiting for the merger to go through and to understand whether they see us as a part of their future or not.
“Apparently they didn’t want an RTS studio in Europe, and to be honest we would have loved to have worked with Activision, but we’re pretty confident in our capabilities and there are not many studios that can match our quality.”
The firm is currently working on the console versions of World in Conflict – Soviet Assault for PS3 and 360 – and has expanded expertise outside the PC space as a result.
“We’re working on the console versions [of World in Conflict] together with Swordfish,” said VP David Polfeldt. “In the past year or so we’ve been increasing our console capabilities, going from PC to having a really good understanding of console as well.”
Activision won’t publish the console titles, however, which are now also on the market.
“Activision won’t publish [Soviet Assault], no,” said Walfisz. “That’s part of the whole situation now. In theory they could sell World in Conflict separately from Massive. I think that any buyer would like to make sure it goes together, but we don’t own it. Activision owns it, so that’s their call.”
While options are opening for the developer, the company is now effectively in limbo. Walfisz was confident, though, that Massive will pull through.
“I think that right now everyone is in ‘wait and see’ mode and just want to know what the future holds,” he said.
“But Massive has been in tough situations before in the past 12 years, and we’ve always come out stronger. Most of the guys in the company at least have faith in our ability to find a really interesting future.”
Tue, Aug 05, 2008 | 07:12 BST
Valve’s Doug Lombardi has said the firm is open to talk about acquisition in an interview with Gamasutra, the first time the shooter developer has mentioned anything of the sort in public.
Valve’s “happy to have that conversation,” he told the site.
“By the same token, the company’s doing pretty well, and we’re really happy with what we’re doing,” he added.
“So we’ll see. I mean, anything is possible.”
Lombardo went on to talk about EA’s involvement with the firm, labouring the point that Valve is as independent as possible and was merely looking for a distribution partner in the publisher.
“We had been socialized to doing so many things ourselves, whether it’s box creation, funding our own development, etcetera,” he said, “that when we came to meet with folks about a distribution deal – and I use that phrase intentionally – we were looking for somebody to do a certain set of services that we didn’t want to do, or weren’t versed in, and nothing more.”
More through the link.
Tue, Jul 29, 2008 | 11:59 BST
Seeking Alpha’s published a piece saying Microsoft could be interested in buying Take-Two.
“I think that Microsoft is a likely bidder for Take-Two. Microsoft already makes a video game platform (Xbox and Xbox 360) as well as independently publishes video games.”
The unnamed author added: “Microsoft could become a serious player in the video game industry if they made a console and sold the two best selling games on the planet. Making GTA exclusive to the Xbox (just like Halo is) would be a terrible decision, but providing some, incentive, like an earlier release date, could drive additional Xbox sales too.”
Lots more through the link.
Tue, Jul 22, 2008 | 20:42 BST
Seems like not a day goes by without an article about Take-Two and EA sitting in a tree. But even amidst all of the commentary, in an interview with VentureBeat, EA CEO John Riccitiello was nonchalant about his company’s current prey.
“I don’t care if people write about Take-Two,” he said. “It doesn’t matter to me. What matters to me is that the best developers want to work for EA. That the best games are published by EA. And we’re making progress toward that goal. I hope we’ll be more successful in years to come. We’ll be on top of a gigantic wave. Having clever verbal sword play about Take-Two doesn’t really matter. I’m not really playing for a headline in the New York Times.”
He added: “There have basically been three moves and there have 6,000 articles on it. It’s sort of amusing. I feel a little bit like those strobe light things where it looks like a guy is moving a lot. The flash goes off but the body doesn’t move. Every time a flash goes off, somebody writes a story on it. To be honest with you, the last time there was news was a couple of months ago.”
The man isn’t afraid to be upfront. Is it too early to declare him “Everybody’s Favorite Executive”?
Tue, Jul 22, 2008 | 07:30 BST
EA’s extended its tender offer for Take-Two, after capturing only 15 percent of the company’s shares with its previous deadline.
The offer is now valid until 11:59pm EST on August 18. This is the fourth time EA has extended its deadline in this way.
Take-Two chairman, Strauss Zelnick, responded, “Take-Two’s Board continues to be 100 percent committed to maximizing stockholder value and remains unanimous in continuing to recommend that our stockholders not tender their shares to EA.
“We are fully engaged in a formal process to evaluate strategic alternatives that have the potential to deliver greater value than EA’s inadequate offer. As part of this process, we continue to engage in meaningful discussions with multiple parties, a number of whom have been conducting due diligence. We also remain absolutely focused on executing on our strategic and business objectives.”
Thu, Jul 10, 2008 | 15:05 BST
Activision and Vivendi have officially merged to form one of the longest game company names ever, Activision Blizzard.
The last obstacle to the creation of the industry’s biggest publisher was cleared yesterday, after Activision shareholders approved the deal.
All the dirty details can be found here.
By Jerry Burns
Wed, Jul 09, 2008 | 07:53 BST
The Activision-Vivendi deal has been approved by a 92 percent majority of Activision shareholders and is expected to be closed today.
The news marks the removal of the final barrier to the creation of the world’s largest videogames publisher.
The deal gives Vivendi a 52 percent controlling stake in Activision.
More on Reuters.
Tue, Jul 08, 2008 | 16:53 BST
Ubisoft’s confirmed a “media convergence” today in the shape of Montreal company Hybride Technologies.
The special effects studio is known for its work on films primarily, such as 300, Sin City and the Spy Kids series.
“This alliance is a true first for the industry,” said Yannis Mallat, Ubisoft Montreal CEO. “Ubisoft and Hybride share the same vision of entertainment convergence and a common passion for innovation and creativity.”
There’s no specific in the announcement on what the outfit’s going to be working on other than “games” and “films”.
Press release after the link.
Wed, Jul 09, 2008 | 06:56 BST
In case you’d forgotten, Activision shareholders are voting today on whether to approve the Vivendi merger and create the world’s largest games publisher.
The City is excited by the prospect, and Wall Street has been heavily tipping the new firm for profitable performance in recent weeks.
There’s a high level of tension in the companies at the moment, however, with UK insiders in both camps uncertain of how any axes will fall.
“Activision is calling the shots,” we were told by a senior source this week, “and two doesn’t go into one.”
UK operations were caused to sweat further at the end of June, when Activision boss Bobby Kotick said he had no plans to expand operations in Britain due to the high cost of living here.
Watch for news on the shareholder vote later today.
Wed, Jun 25, 2008 | 09:52 BST
Speaking to GI, Crave chief Michael Mass has admitted that the company’s decision to leave ESA had nothing to do with the organisation itself, but was rather motivated by an upcoming company sale.
“Crave’s departure from ESA at this juncture is not a statement against the value provided by our longstanding membership, but rather was motivated by our need to focus on the impending sale of our company,” he said.
“We will be re-evaluating our decision, hopefully in the near future. Crave still supports the goals and aims of ESA.”
More through the link.
Thu, Jun 19, 2008 | 16:37 BST
According to this Reuters report, Take-Two has reached a deal with the FTC that will allow the firm to lessen the volume of information it’s providing to the body relating to its potential EA takeover.
“Take-Two said that it agreed with the FTC on Wednesday to continue to provide information, but limit the scope of information and access to witnesses in a way that will reduce the cost and distraction to its employees,” said the piece.
“The agreement will also avert the need for a hearing scheduled for June 24 by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.”
More through the link.
Tue, Jun 17, 2008 | 23:34 BST
EA has extended its offer on Take-Two to July 18. The previous offer expired at 12am EST yesterday.
“Our offer price remains unchanged at $25.74 per share, which is a substantial premium to where Take-Two’s stock was trading prior to our offer,” said Owen Mahoney, SVP of EA Corporate Development.
“We congratulate Rockstar on the successful launch of GTA IV but believe our offer reflects a full and fair price based on the long-term value of Take-Two’s entire operation.”
Press release after the link.
Mon, Jun 16, 2008 | 18:42 BST
Tue, Jun 10, 2008 | 13:31 BST
This Forbes article argues that EA isn’t the only way forward for Take-Two is the firm did decide to go down the merger route, saying that Ubisoft would also be a good option.
“Ubisoft has shown they do a good job of managing original intellectual property. Culturally, Take-Two developers would not have a problem at Ubisoft because they allow a decent degree of creative freedom,” said Doug Creutz, analyst at San Francisco firm Cowen and Co.
The fit would be mutually beneficially, the piece says, as Ubisoft may have reached the end of a period of heavy organic growth.
“Ubisoft has grown phenomenally over the past few years,” says Todd Greenwald, an analyst at Signal Hill. “But the only way for them to continue to grow is to enter categories that they aren’t in.”
Much more through the link.
Fri, Jun 06, 2008 | 11:16 BST
As part of last night’s quarterly financials statemen, Take-Two confirmed that it has so far spent $5.3 million on legal fees thanks to EA’s offer for the company.
The press release noted that te firm had binned “$5.3 million in professional fees and legal expenses, with the majority related to Electronic Arts’ unsolicited tender offer.”
Read the full thing here.
Fri, Jun 06, 2008 | 10:13 BST
Take-Two boss Strauss Zelnick has just confirmed that the company is in active discussion with several companies to sell the company.
“We’re actively engaged in that process now,” he said, talking in an ongoing conference call backing up a Q2 financial release.
“We have and continue to have” discussions with “a number of third parties,” Zelnick added.
Zelnick made the comment after mentioning EA’s “highly conditional” offer for the firm and saying that all avenues for Take-Two’s future are being explored, including staying independent and talking to other companies.
Wed, Jun 04, 2008 | 19:44 BST
EA announced today that it’s reached and agreement with the Federal Trade Commission to not buy Take-Two until the regulatore has finished investigating the proposed deal.
The publisher said it would wait for a further 45 days after delivering information required by the FTC probe or the completion of the investigation, whichever came sooner.
More on Reuters.
Wed, May 21, 2008 | 06:48 BST
Epic’s confirmed is acquisition of Chair Entertainment, the developer of XBLA game Undertow.
The smaller company has now become a wholly owned subsidiary of the Gears of War developer and will continue to, like, make games using the Unreal Engine.
Financial terms weren’t disclosed. Press release after the link.