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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Take-Two Rejects Bid From Electronic Arts

Slashdot It! Take-Two Interactive Software told shareholders to reject a $2 billion hostile bid from a rival video game publisher, Electronic Arts, as too low, but said it had begun to explore a sale or other options. Take-Two said it was still open to a combination with Electronic Arts or another company, but not before the April 29 release of its Grand Theft Auto IV, widely expected to be the best-selling video game this year. Electronic Arts responded by saying its offer was “full and fair” and reflected the value of Take-Two’s game franchises, employees and improving operations. “By advising its stockholders to reject the offer, Take-Two’s board is exposing them to further delays which may reduce the value and the certainty of a potential transaction,” Electronic Arts said. Take-Two said its board had begun considering strategic alternatives and preparing materials that any potential buyer would need to conduct due diligence. It said it had indications of interest from other companies since Electronic Arts made its $26-a-share offer, but had not held any substantive talks. Take-Two also adopted a 180-day shareholders’ rights plan, or poison pill, to guard against Electronic Arts’ hostile bid and delayed its annual meeting in New York to April 17 from April 10. The Electronic Arts offer expires on April 11, although the company can extend it. Electronic Arts, the world’s largest video game publisher, took its all-cash bid directly to stockholders this month. It faces stepped-up competition from a rival, Activision, which is merging with the video games unit of the French conglomerate Vivendi. Many analysts expect that the bid by Electronic Arts will ultimately succeed, but that the company may have to raise its offer. “This thing is very much in play, and we’re seeing public bargaining,” said Todd Mitchell, an analyst with Kaufman Brothers. Get Daily Updates via Email Protect your computer with Windows Onecare Get paid $7.50 for reviewing my post Ad Space

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