Take-Two: EA not sole suitor

Grand Theft Auto IV publisher says at least one other company is interested in exploring a merger or acquisition.

Though some analysts view Electronic Arts' attempted acquisition of Take-Two Interactive as a foregone conclusion, the Madden NFL publisher may have some competition in its bid for the house that Grand Theft Auto built. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday, Take-Two revealed that since EA went public with its buyout offer on Sunday, other companies have come calling.

"From time to time the company receives, and since the issuance of the press release by EA the company has received, informal indications of interest in a business combination," the filing read. "However, the company has not received any written 'offers' and has not engaged in any substantive discussions with any party (including EA) with respect to a business combination since [February 14, 2008]."

Take-Two didn't name the other parties who might be interested in the company, but a few big names made their feelings on the publisher known earlier this week. Earlier this week, Ubisoft said it wasn't interested in big acquisitions, suggesting its expansion plans called for more licensed activity instead. Meanwhile, Activision Blizzard head Robert Kotick said his own company had looked at Take-Two Interactive as an acquisition target, but in the end decided it wouldn't be a desirable business combination.

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139 comments
zhuge_liang_
zhuge_liang_

I agree with MGSteve! If Sony were to buy 2K, the results are better than imagined!

mjswooosh
mjswooosh

Thrawnkkar, you need to check facts before you open that gaping hole in your head and spout off regarding subjects you clearly have NO CLUE about. The actual sales numbers indicate that the PS3 outsold the Xbox 360 for the first time since launch during January of 2008. Official sales numbers for February have not been released yet. The NPD will release official February sales numbers on March 15th. If you do the math, this means best case scenario is that the PS3 has outsold the 360 for approximately 8 weeks, not 12. Check this website: http://ps3.qj.net/NPD-January-2008-sales-numbers-PS3-outsells-Xbox-360-for-the-first-time/pg/49/aid/113732 Considering the HUGE total numbers sold advantage that the 360 has over the PS3 SINCE LAUNCH, the very, very small numbers that it outsold the 360 in January (and MAYBE February) is not going to catch Sony up to Microsoft any time soon. A far better indicator of which system is regarded as the better sales platform for developers is to look at units sold of popular games. Check the numbers at this site and pay particular attention the last paragraph which compares the number of copies of Call of Duty 4 sold vor the 360 vs. the PS3: http://www.videogamer.com/news/15-02-2008-7527.html Let's do a fact check. Hmmm...Call of Duty 4 on Xbox 360 was the No.1 title for January with sales of 330,000 units, more than double the game's sales on PS3 (140,000). Wii Play took second place with 298,100 units, Guitar Hero III Wii third (239,600 units), Rock Band Xbox 360 fourth (183,800 units) and Guitar Hero III Xbox 360 took fifth (182,700 units) So, in other words...PS3 did not crack the top 5 units sold for any of the 3 platforms. The 360 sold the 1st, 4th, and 5th most copies, while the Wii sold the 2nd and 3rd. If you're a developer, that means the 360 and Wii take precedence while the PS3 comes in last. This MIGHT change in the next couple of years if and only if the PS3 continues to outsell the 360 by LARGE numbers every month...but even then I think the best the PS3 can hope for by the end of this product cycle is a virtual tie. Right now they are still losing, big time. To think otherwise is to paint yourself as an obvious Sony fanboy who does not pay attention to the facts. So, I'd say you're the tool...not SPaM782. Ciao. :-)

Thrawnkkar
Thrawnkkar

Spam, your a tool. The PS3 has out sold the XBOX360 for 12 straight weeks, the last 3 it has outsold the XBOX360 in America itself, by an INCREASING margin. Do a little research before you spout your drivil.

SPaM782
SPaM782

The thing which is killing the PS3 at the moment is its 3rd party developers in the Western half of the world (Europe and America) which is the coding of the PS3's language. Ive 'tried' to read some of the coding which some with many of the PS3 biggest titles and its a brain ache to say the least. Whereas the Xbox360 which is own by the HUMONGUS, to say the least, Microsoft Corperation who make up alteast 1/2 of the computing world if not more are able to make easy to use and very accessible programmes to make things with. Im an XNA developer and its a joy to use compaired to some of the programmes if worked with. And to be honest the PS3 is going to have some trouble beating the 360 until the second or even third generation of games come out for the current/next gen consoles (meaning 360/PS3/Wii) and its all due to programming languages. Why do you think Rockstar North (whom i know a few people who work for them) have been showing almost exclusively the 360 version? This is due to it being an easier to use programme to build the game on. im not saying the PS3 version will be any different (except the for EpContent on 360). Its just the coding language its that much more difficult to use. Im not a fanboy of either consoles. I do have a 360 and not a PS3 but thats only due to pricing. Personally id call myself a personal computer fan more than anything and im almost always running on the best equipment (which is where consoles can never compete with PCs). Ive just realised how off topic this was from the Take2 purchasing subject. My excuse is that ive just finished work. Went down to my local late bar with a few of my security doormen and pop a few extacy and am feeling the high off of them. Sorry. Your loving GS poster

MGSteve
MGSteve

hmm, if Sony were to buy Take2, it would make quite a lot of games for the 360, potentially, PS3 exclusive! Wonder if they could pull GTA 4 for the 360 in time if they did buy T2 ;)

SPaM782
SPaM782

To be honest im not suprised companies are wanting to purchase Take 2. They have a very good history of producing games which sell massively. I personally cannot think of any other company which has been more successful other than the 'big guns'. Take 2 don't make MANY games compared to competitors but the games they do make are generally ones which will sell well for years take the GTA franchise by Rockstar for example, also The Elder Scroll series. I do think EA are only wanting to purchase T2 for a massive boost in their profit margins with the imminent release of GTAIV but its the one think i dont like about EA at the moment.....Money. Sure EA do make some great games FIFA 08 (and im a PES fan) but they churn yearly updates after yearly updates. Sure Sports games its understandable but games like the now repetative Need For Speed series are just a pain to see on store shelves every November. Personally, if i was Take 2, i wouldn't sell at all. GTAIV alone will make more than the £2billion which was offered by EA and there is also Fallout3 and TES:V in the long run. Dont sell yourselves out Take 2.

Chief_Kuuni
Chief_Kuuni

wonder who will buy the company, just hopefully they keep the games great as they have been. Not turning them into junk

Vash67
Vash67

Gamespot is only mentioning non-Japanese companies as (possible) buyers. Sure, EA, Ubi, and Activision are the big guns, but I can't help but think Namco Bandai, Squarenix, and Capcom could possibly be interested. Square has shown in the past that it likes to partner up with American companies (it did so with EA back during the PS1 days). Capcom publishes many Rockstar games in Japan so it could bhe worth while to them. And Namco.... well... just why the hell not?

spike6681
spike6681

i really hope EA doesn't buy T2. this will be terrible for the industry. EA DOES NOT need any more power than they already have. i am sick of EA and it's monopolistic practices. the worst part of it is that it would end the NBA 2k series which i love. NBA 2k is a great series and i refuse to play EA basketball games. i'll shoot myself if NBA LIVE is the only basketball game on the market. FRIGGIN' EA! I HATE YOU!

LindBergh2007
LindBergh2007

Face it everyone. EA would milk Take 2 for all thier worth, Activision would most likely churn out GTA for every single console. But Sega would obviously do them more good by only releasing a GTA game every once in a while, Just think about "2K Sports" being published by SEGA once again.

Skreb-Masters
Skreb-Masters

Everyone wants to get a slice of the pie GTAIV's profits will be bringing. And who can blame them?

Diernes
Diernes

I am thinking as long as T2 can survive until a while after GTA4's release we may see the tables turned....

Jshaw71
Jshaw71

take two and activision/blizzard merging would have been nice to see, but activision/blizzard said no, hmm, i think them saying about the deal was a bad idea, oh well, i guess they know best...

MichaeltheCM
MichaeltheCM

wow, companies have sure been busy lately

xvwvx
xvwvx

Take Two and EA just don't sound like a good combination. T2 is known for taking time with their games. I mean, even their yearly sports games are better than anything EA can put out. I hope that T2 stays independent, but if they do merge or get bought, I pray to God that it's not to EA.

GohanSSJZ
GohanSSJZ

I think if Microsft has the chance to buy it up, that they will, it would be a huge gain for them, and they definetly have the money, more so then EA will ever have.

guitarman89
guitarman89

Take Two is just trying up the bid for their buyout, but they may be forced to accept the original offer while it's still on the table.

lowerpass
lowerpass

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

tyladog
tyladog

If I remember correctly, didn't MS sell the XSN brand (Links, Top Spin, Amped etc) to Take Two? It was as part of some kind of deal to get EA to put their games on Xbox Live. Wouldn't be a huge stretch of the imagination to think that they might be interested in getting the rights back to stop EA getting their hands on them and at the same time getting sole publishing rights to the GTA brand (if not Rockstar themselves) would be a very nice bonus. Just a thought.

Lord_Bloodwar
Lord_Bloodwar

Hey everybody knows that the quality of the sports games sucked so bad years ago. Ever since they started doing sports games every damn year. Well, if they buy Take Two, you can expect to see a GTA 2009, GTA 2010, GTA 2011 and so forth. How many ways can a man steal a car or beat a hooker? EA has the answer for that one with each version of the game to come out each year. LOL

ParisSun
ParisSun

The $26 a share is with GTA figured in. Take 2 better take the deal while it's there. It's just business, nothing personal.

Kelemhuma
Kelemhuma

Hey guys if EA buys out Take 2 say goodby to all goods spots games. You know they will put an end to 2k9 Basketball and Baseball. Then you will be forced to play there crappy basketball and baseball game. If that happened I would quit playing spots games. Unless they had take 2 guys take over there sports game devopment. I quit buying football games evere since they have aquired exclusive licence. EA leave my sports games alone with professionals. EA you suck azz.

War_Martyr
War_Martyr

I wouldn't mind if Take Two merged with another company, but I really hope it's a respectable company not trying to milk their franchises dry.

juju187
juju187

im pretty sure they will get brought out sooner or later, but I look at it this way. Let me sell my AAA franchise april 29 to the masses and set the bar how much im worth. hell if i sell enuff i can probly by a company of my own.

DrKill09
DrKill09

AngelnX, I'd love it if Take2 and Sega merged, but I doubt that would happen, unfortunately. EA suck!

pigonthewing
pigonthewing

Its naive to think that its just other game companies looking at take two even though they are the logical choice. The Toronto Maple Leafs and Bell Canada are owned by the Teachers Pension plan. Hence why Bell is not very good and the Leafs suck. But it could be a movie studio wanting to grab a larger share of the video game market. Or even more likely maybe GE wants them to supplement the loss in revenues from NBC because a lot of viewers would rather play games then watch tv.

studnothin
studnothin

if this isn't another perfect example of how EA is basically bringing down the enjoyment of games for gamers everywhere, i don't know what the f*ck is! yet another company gets locked into the backroom politics of all this corporate bullsh*t, and the people that end up paying for it are you and me. sorry to make it sound all "fire and brimstone" like, but don't be surprised if interactive media in gaming never makes it out of its nickelodeon phase due to the strain of consumer negligence and company takeovers.

skyline7284
skyline7284

This is TakeTwo trying to get EA to raise its bid, i would really be suprised if there was another company wanting to buy them, Activision said No, who else is left other then first party comapnies? THQ? Nah, the only Bidder left is EA plain and simple. Nobody else has the money

lukeymonw
lukeymonw

The unfortunate thing about this situation is that T2 may not be able to stop EA. If EA decided it wanted to, it could buy the majority of the public shares. Once they own the majority of the stock it's over for T2 and EA slips into control. Ridiculous.

nappan
nappan

trinity_rdp said: "EA nowadays is mostly Quantity and less Quality but that's just me" No, that's not just you, I think that almost everyone here would agree with that statement.

trinity_rdp
trinity_rdp

Its a good thing EA didnt get T2.. If I'm not mistaken 2K sports is also under T2 and I love the NBA 2K series. EA's NBA Live series went downhill IMHO after Live 98 and I dont want EA to tarnish that series as well. EA nowadays is mostly Quantity and less Quality but that's just me

Richmaester6907
Richmaester6907

Why cant companies just not be bought and keep being themselves I mean isnt EA successful as they are

haesuse
haesuse

yeah i agree just say no! they are doing as good as they should on their own and with some nice titles, such as GTAIV, coming out they should do even better.

lowerpass
lowerpass

I think EA needs a lesson. Please take two do not bow down to EA. This may destroy your creativity. We all know what is acquisiton is all about.It eliminiates competition.So if we do not have any competition the develpoers will not try to make better games.

nappan
nappan

I would guess that if a group like EA purchased T2, and tried to resitrict development houses like R*, those houses would either leave, or dissolve and reform. You need to take the long view here, when it comes to things like game development. Just as with movie studios and movies themselves, large groups make bigger films, but then "indie" jobs crop up. Eventually they become big fish, and either change their style, or they are bought up by a bigger company. Does that mean no new and fresh ideas are coming along? Well, for a while maybe, but eventually a new indie appears, or autonomous forces like the Cohn brothers do their thing. The same thing will happen here, especially as development tools become more familiar for the next gen, and as engines and addons (like havok) that a smaller dev can use without having to build from the ground up. Oh, and there's always total shots from left field the Crytek, right?

LindBergh2007
LindBergh2007

After reading most of everyone comments, I think it's mostly agree that out of all the publishers who would best benfit from Take 2, Sega most likely benifits.

Acurev
Acurev

at what point are these companies considered a monopoly? I mean Blizzard and Activition is huge enough. Pretty soon were going to have like two different game publishers/devolopers....jeez

-Muchacho-
-Muchacho-

Ok, EA needs to stop buying so many company. Everyone needs some other company to beat in sale records and originality. Don't want to play EA games all my life!

x-2tha-z
x-2tha-z

I'm not surprised more companies are interested in T2. Not only do they publish R* games but they have also published great games like Oblivion, The Darkness and Bioshock among others. They are probably publishing Fallout 3 too? IDK. I hope EA isn't successful in their acquisition attempts. I think someone like Ubisoft or Vivendi would be better. Anyone but EA please, please, please. No EA..........please.

ghost867
ghost867

Activision just needs to jump in there and be a complete ass by shaking things. Look at baseball. The Yankees were trying to get a hold of Johan Santana. Things looked good for them to get him, then the Red Sox came in and try to jack up the price on Johan, since he'd be viewed as more valuable if two teams are trying to get him. This would either make the Yankees have to pay more for him, which could take funds from other players and trades that may hurt the Yankees of benefit the Red Sox. Or it could stop the Yankees from pursuing him anymore, since the price was so high. In the end, the Red Sox played their cards right, and the Yankees passed on Johan. Since they're both in the same division, it would of been a big deal of one of them acquired him. Instead, he ended up in the Mets.Not the most perfect example with an ending like that, but you get the point. If Activision wants to try and shake things up, and potentially hurt EA financially, or get them not to buy Take-Two, it could work in Activision's benefit. Just think about it....

AngelnX
AngelnX

What if T2 + Sega = Sega Sports all over again

DarkKaosKnight
DarkKaosKnight

They don't need EA's 26$ a share anymore, EA is going to have to up the price especially with GTA 4 just around the corner, that should give the stock a nice bump as well. EA going public with this bid is going to come back and bite them on the ass it would seem.

raw153
raw153

Take Two is probably just trying to drive the price up by saying that others are interested.

JangoWuzHere
JangoWuzHere

I hate EA soon they will own every damn game company in the world and then what well no more original games and not to mention rushed and bad games as well

Karmacodelc18
Karmacodelc18

Why does everything turn into geek wars (thats what I call the console wars lol) I could care less about EA though...

nintendoboy16
nintendoboy16

EA, why are you even trying to build your buissness empire? Please stop, I have a feeling you'll buy the first party companies. Take 2 did the right thing in my opinion.