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Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Ubisoft Open to Purchase by Media Conglomerate

Ubisoft Open to Purchase by Media Conglomerate

"Ubisoft Chairman and CEO Yves Guillemot is apparently open to an acquisition by a large media company. He would not say which companies Ubisoft had been talking to, but analysts have suggested Disney, Time Warner and Vivendi Universal as possibilities. And if the company manages to stay independent, Guillemot believes that Ubisoft will double its value in the next two years.

Ever since Electronic Arts announced back on December 20 of last year that it had acquired 19.9 percent of French publisher Ubisoft, making EA the largest shareholder and giving the company 20.88 percent of the voting rights, the industry has been rife with speculation that a full buyout of Europe's third-biggest independent publisher is imminent.

More than five months later Ubisoft remains independent, but how long will that last? Could a purchase by a large media conglomerate be in Ubisoft's future?


In talks with media companies
Despite all this discussion about independence, Guillemot also told reporters at E3 that he would still be open to an acquisition/merger. Moreover, he said that Ubisoft has actually been in talks with entertainment companies. Guillemot refused to say which media groups Ubisoft had been in contact with, but some analysts believe that companies such as Time Warner Inc. or Walt Disney Co. are very real possibilities."

Well if EA doesn't gobble them up it looks like maybe Time Warner might clobber Ubisoft as an Encore for what they did to AOL.

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