Vivendi now unsure about Ubisoft Takeover bid - Bloomberg

Vivendi now unsure about Ubisoft Takeover bid - Bloomberg
Sean Cleaver

By Sean Cleaver

September 27th 2017 at 11:35AM

Speaking to the news website, Vivendi COO Stephane Roussel said the company may sell its stock following the Ubisoft AGM

The talk of a Vivendi takeover of Ubisoft has prevailed since the French media giant started buying shares in the company and since it took over mobile publisher Gameloft in a similar fashion. However, the news from Friday's AGM at Ubisoft seemed to suggest that the French games publisher is doing well enough without Vivendi's influence.

According to reports from news website Bloomberg, Vivendi is now reconsidering its previous intention to make a bid for Ubisoft. In an interview after the AGM, COO of Vivendi, Stephane Roussell said that Vivendi hasn't decided whether to make a bid for Ubisoft or sell its stock in the company.

The current state of play is that Vivendi is close to the 30 per cent level that would require the company to make a bid for ownership, under French Law, due to double-voting rights. Vivendi has previously had a request for a board seat rejected and did not pursue a shareholder vote at this years AGM or the previous AGM.

This news goes against a previous intention that Vivendi was planning a takeover to help ease shareholder concern over the company's recent spending.

Part of Ubisoft's success in fending off this takeover has been its financial results. An advance of 74 percent in share value has been due to releasing few big titles but having a large focus on them. Mario & Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, for example, is the best selling third party title for the Nintendo Switch console.

"We’ve developed a more profitable business in part because players have a lot more content, services and opportunities within our games, and in turn, they can buy more while playing," said Ubisoft CEO, Yves Guillemot. "We also now have a much better understanding of our clients’ needs and gameplay preferences, thanks to our online games and enhanced data management systems."