Vivendi appears to be abandoning its plans of taking over Ubisoft as the two companies announced that Vivendi will be selling its entire stake in Ubisoft, which amounts to 27.3% of Ubisoft's share capital. What's more, Chinese megacorp Tencent will be investing in Ubisoft as a long-term investor and new strategic partner.
Stock watchers have been observing Vivendi's interest in taking over French video game company, Ubisoft, for some time now. Vivendi, a French multimedia company, has publicly stated interest in acquiring a new video game arm, with Ubisoft as a primary candidate. Vivendi has been rapidly acquiring Ubisoft stock over several years, with intentions of a possible takeover.
Ubisoft's Guillemot brothers have restisted Vivendi's overtures, making clear that Ubisoft was not going to be handed over to Vivendi. Today's news signals the Guillemot brothers' successful defense against Vivendi's intentions for Ubisoft. There will be a share buy-back by Ubisoft of shares owned by Vivendi, accretive to all Ubisoft shareholders; as well as acquisition of Vivendi owned shares by Guillemot Brothers SE. The transactions will be realized a 66 euros per share
In a simultaneous move, Ubisoft also announced that Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan and Chinese game company Tencent will become long-term investors, with Tencent acquiring five percent of Ubisoft. What's more Ubisoft has agreed to a new strategic partnership with Tencent which will help Ubisoft accelerate game development in China. Something Ubisoft co-founder and CEO Yves Guillemot mentioned was a goal for the company during an investors call earlier this year.
In a statement Guillemot said, "Today, Ubisoft is fully reaping the benefits of our long-term strategy and the successful transformation towards a more recurring and profitable business." He added," Ubisoft is perfectly positioned to capture the numerous video game growth drivers in the coming years."