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Last month, publisher Take-Two announced its intention to acquire UK game publisher/developer Codemasters for $994 million. Rival EA has other ideas, though, and has outbid Take-Two.
As Reuters reports, Codemasters considers EA’s $1.2 billion acquisition offer to be “superior” to that of Take-Two. EA Chief Executive Officer Andrew Wilson said, “With the full leverage of EA’s technology, platform expertise, and global reach, this combination will allow us to grow our existing franchises and deliver more industry-defining racing experiences.”
Although EA is clearly in the driving seat now, Take-Two has stated it is considering its position, meaning an even better offer may be forthcoming. We could still see a bidding war ensue, and other publishers enter the fray. Citi analysts pointed out that, “We think Codemasters is an attractive asset with a lot of the qualities a consolidator might look for… It also has a strategic relationship with Chinese operator NetEase, offering a direct route in the lucrative Chinese market.”
Codemasters is set to celebrate its 35th anniversary next year. The company has so far provided the gaming world with titles including Micro Machines, TOCA, Grid, Colin McRae Rally, Dirt, Operation Flashpoint, Project CARS, World Rally Championship, and of course the F1 series of games since 2009.
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