Square Enix makes $200M Tecmo bid

Final Fantasy XIII publisher makes "friendly" 22.3 billion-yen offer for troubled Ninja Gaiden-maker; deadline Sept. 4.

323 Comments

Less than 24 hours after it made headlines for selling over 1 million copies of Ninja Gaiden II, Tecmo is making news again. This morning, role-playing game giant Square Enix (Final Fantasy XIII) announced it was making an unsolicited but nonhostile bid for the Dead or Alive 4 publisher.

In a statement, Square Enix president Yoichi Wada presented the offer as an attempt to rescue Tecmo. In the span of two months, the publisher has been rocked by a declining stock price, class-action lawsuits, and the departure of and legal action by star designer Tomonobu Itagaki. Just last week, Tecmo president Yoshimi Yasuda abruptly stepped down, citing personal reasons.

"Tecmo is a group of excellent creators with a proven track record in the global market, which is a precious human resource of Japan," explained Wada. "We, however, cannot be optimistic about the future of this significant resource, given the current circumstances surrounding Tecmo. We believe that Tecmo will be able to make a great leap forward by joining Square Enix Group, which will provide the group with further growth opportunities as well."

Though Tecmo has not yet publicly commented on Square Enix's offer, it is likely tempting to many shareholders. The ¥920 ($8.46) per share offer is a 30 percent premium on Tecmo's ¥706 ($6.49) closing price on Thursday. The Bloomberg news service values the entire bid at 22.3 billion yen ($205 million). As a result of the offer, Tecmo stock shot up 14 percent to close ¥806 ($7.41) per share today, with Square Enix's stock rising 2.6 percent to ¥3,610 ($33.20).

While generous, Square-Enix's self-described "friendly takeover bid" (TOB) is very time-sensitive, expiring on September 4--next Thursday. Wada's statement ended with "If [Square Enix] should, by the deadline, receive no response from Tecmo, or fail to obtain consent by the board of directors of Tecmo to the TOB, the company will withdraw the proposal, and will NOT acquire the Tecmo shares through the TOB as planned in the proposal." (Emphasis in the original.)

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Join the conversation
There are 323 comments about this story
323 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
GameSpot has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to toxic conduct in comments. Any abusive, racist, sexist, threatening, bullying, vulgar, and otherwise objectionable behavior will result in moderation and/or account termination. Please keep your discussion civil.

Avatar image for infektious94
infektious94

So uh...is Team Ninja still working at Tecmo, or did they leave with Itagaki, or are they some super-secret separate entity altogether whose name I should not speak of in the dead of night? And to the person that said Ninja Gaiden RPG: YES, please.

Avatar image for cspark809
cspark809

I guess square makes good money. Only one bad thing. We gonna see whole bunch of remakes of games and ds games will cost 39.99 instead of 34.99 like other publishing companies. 5 dollar ain't really a big deal for many people, but some ds games are actually 29.99 or less compare to that its expensive.

Avatar image for yboucher
yboucher

Far from unexpected. As soon as the company was gutted from both Itagaki and it's CEO, it was either gonna go under or be picked up by someone. I understand Square Enix wants to diversify, but I wish it was someone else bidding. There's a reason S-E is STILL stuck with Final Fantasy after having tried to release other kind of stuff, and buying Taito: it's the company culture, and it's the kind of staff it attracts. If they're buying Tecmo just for the licenses (and that should be it, because Tecmo has very little staff), then they'll just fill Tecmo's projects with JRPG-loving staff, and that'll lead nowhere. Just like it did with Taito.

Avatar image for X-RS
X-RS

great -.- well be seeing cloud in doa

Avatar image for RajMyster
RajMyster

sniperhare*

Avatar image for RajMyster
RajMyster

well snipershare that means u probably have a crappy taste in games if theres not many by either cuz theres a ****load

Avatar image for Naedeslus
Naedeslus

This was unexpected. Though Tecmo does seem to be going under. This is a pretty good offer, and I think they might want to consider it. I'm all for it. Maybe in the FFVII remake in 5+ years, we can have a volley ball mini game!

Avatar image for sniperhare
sniperhare

Oh well, neither company has made many games that I've enjoyed.

Avatar image for Thunderstarter
Thunderstarter

Ninja Gaiden Action RPG FTW!!!!

Avatar image for BudsMcGreen
BudsMcGreen

Now watch, Tecmo will refuse bid and EA will acquire Tecmo by way of hostile takeover.

Avatar image for karateyoyo
karateyoyo

idk If Itagaki gets another job, he's gonna have to take it as seriously as his last one. I hope I see some DOA renders from Tetsuya Nomura. lol

Avatar image for frazzle00
frazzle00

Now that Itagaki is gone, and if Square Enix take over, we can finally see some quality titles from Tecmo. Ninja Gaiden 2 was garbage (and yes I loved the original Xbox version):(.

Avatar image for cire5
cire5

ninja gaiedn rpg

Avatar image for EnaVRi
EnaVRi

Hmmm... Is this good or bad... Now that Microsoft will be losing Tecmo as its 3rd party supporter... Square Enix will be milking money out of Microsoft and Sony... Well... I hope DOA and NG series will be coming to PS3 too... Ahahaha

Avatar image for otanikun
otanikun

You're kidding me...since Itagaki left their stocks have gone down faster than a stripper down a pole, they let themselves get into that situation, let Tecmo sink.

Avatar image for tupac-makaveli
tupac-makaveli

i'm all for this.

Avatar image for initiald411
initiald411

I find that kinda funny that square pulls this out of nowhere right after complaining about money issues. I mean whats really going on here, I'm not sure I can trust anything they say anymore.

Avatar image for sykalob
sykalob

"if you want to get alive go and run for your life".Three days grace

Avatar image for TiElY
TiElY

Well, at this rate, Tecmo will either lose everything or be able to save part of itself. Which would you choose?

Avatar image for grimskunkMGS4
grimskunkMGS4

omg microsoft didnt buy em out sweet finaly we can see square enix works its magic and hopefully will introduce the new tecmo games for ps3 and 360 im am looking foward to these new games if it does happen :P

Avatar image for vaejas
vaejas

'scuse me, gotta go pre-order Final Fantasy Xtreme Beach Volleyball....... (you know you want it!)

Avatar image for amkalfus
amkalfus

wow... that's crazy. i say that square enix is doin the right thing. they aren't trying to buy the world like some lame companies, but they are trying to kkeep talented people making batter games! i commend thee sqeenix

Avatar image for Timstuff
Timstuff

With Square backing them, Ninja Gaiden 3 and Dead or Alive 5 could be far bigger events than they ever could have been before. Square has some serious marketing muscle and I'm sure they'd throw a lot more production value at Tecmo's properties.

Avatar image for swyg
swyg

From buffdaddy69: Do you think Square will pay cash or gil? Post of the day right here^

Avatar image for Rakuho
Rakuho

why not just let this one go. i'm sure there are better places to invest 200mill in, unless of course they got as much money as sand on a beach. Other than NG there isn't anything that i would want from tecmo, and i don't even like it that much either. But i guess expansion is the name of the game.

Avatar image for BUAKAW_PP
BUAKAW_PP

final fantasy vs DoA fighting game kkkkk but please no rpg ryu hayabusa

Avatar image for TiElY
TiElY

Huh... This is interesting. I'm not so much for Square Enix taking over the Japanese gaming industry myself, but it seems like Tecmo is going under - for them this choice might be 'to do or die'. Although I'm not an expert, I see many good franchises dying out with this 'friendly take over, as Vash67 has put. However, if Square Enix is really a good guy, maybe we would see new Tecmo games come out that are even better than prior tecmo games, due to a larger group of programmers - not to mention that Crystal Tools would likely help the incoming programmers significantly. If Tecmo is able to create its own original games with the support of Square Enix - even if operating under its name - I would be in favor of this. However, if Square is only looking to snuff out the competition with this take over I would strongly be against this - Tecmo produces a unique type of game that Square Enix could never replace.

Avatar image for RAVEZero
RAVEZero

This is probably their one shot at survival. With their two good franchises being DOA and Gaiden, they would have to push out iteration after iteration to keep them afloat. Seeing as how Itagaki and the original Team Ninja isn't on board anymore, however, the quality alone has a strong chance of sinking after each release.

Avatar image for polsci1503
polsci1503

@themyth01: Yeah, but the IP's they own are worth it.

Avatar image for Dead_or_Alive
Dead_or_Alive

@cooldude03 Tecmo definitly needs to do something. They lost their most passionate original thinker in Itagaki earlier this year. Although Square Enix's only original concept is putting a new name on their carbon copy RPGs. Japanese companies should stick together. Plus no matter my opinion of these two companies they both have contributed some of the most popular franchises in gaming history. The combination of these two companies could only result in positive things. In this months issue of IGN magazine it was stated that Itagaki is looking for another job. I hope somebody takes him he makes cool games. Also it was said that Itagaki wants to continue making his games exclusively for Xbox 360. Loyal to the end.

Avatar image for duckafro
duckafro

jeez i bet square enix has little intentions of keeping tecmo employees. i wouldnt b surprised if square enix jus wanted thier dead or alive brand to jump into the fighting genre and expand their market.

Avatar image for gamer082009
gamer082009

OK, where's EA or Microsoft. Maybe Microsoft should buy Tecmo just to add to the rain of 1st party exclusivity for the Xbox 360. I'd see Microsoft raising there bid to 220-250M, IF they were interested.

Avatar image for themyth01
themyth01

Wihout Itagaki and most of Team Ninja gone though, Tecmo isn't really that valuable...

Avatar image for jsmoke03
jsmoke03

thats awfully nice of them. i wonder why the rest of the western world can't play nice...hahaha

Avatar image for onething77
onething77

I think they should decline the offer. However bad the situation may be, I think Tecmo will triumphantly work their way out of it. Plus, we can't let anything jeopardize the future of Ninja Gaiden.

Avatar image for Timstuff
Timstuff

What's Tecmo going to do if Square Enix doesn't buy them? That's what I want to know. The deal seems pretty good to me. Tecmo would be wise to accept.

Avatar image for metabolic_youth
metabolic_youth

Team Ninja(Techmo's best team)had a brain drain already. Square is betting that they can make something of what's left. Reminds me of Microsoft Rare.

Avatar image for ctg867
ctg867

Well Square Enix has proven that when the acquire another studio like Taito, they go there to pick up a smaller company who is struggling and would benefit from larger help, and that's good for gamers and the industry. I would expect the same from a Temco buyout. The reason why Taito is putting out games again is because they have Square Enix's support. Look at Exit, Legend of Kage, Space Invaders Extreme, Arkanoid, and all the games they've brought to Japan and stuff they've brought to the Wii. They've had solid success sales wise (and especially quality wise) with Square Enix owning them, and I'm curious to see where that's going. Unlike Activision, who when they bought Vivendi, they canceled, sold off, and let go a bunch of games just so they could own Blizzard and World of Warcraft. And unlike EA who for months tried to buyout Take-Two through a hostile Takeover, and failed. The worst part is that neither Vivendi nor Take-Two were or are in serious financial trouble, and neither should nor needed to be bought. While Temco and Taito both were or are having their own troubles. Gotta love how the Japanese, people who are usually claimed to be slipping in the gaming industry and making bad business decisions, are the ones who are actually making the smart decisions with stuff like this. >_>

Avatar image for MGSFan92
MGSFan92

I love this first Tecmo, then take over Valve, Bungie, Retro, Treyarch, Activison, Konami, Ubisoft, then... THE WORLD!!!

Avatar image for spawnassasin
spawnassasin

hmmmm sounds interesting

Avatar image for Little_Socrates
Little_Socrates

Honestly, I see nothing interesting, negative or positive, about this. If Square gets Tecmo, all that means is Tecmo will have more funding (not that they don't always have enough funding to come out with their big-budget games anyways) and Square will get some of that money. Square won't screw with Tecmo. They've been where Tecmo is now (Final Fantasy was supposed to be their last game before going bankrupt if anyone doesn't know, hence the name), and they know that they make good games. They'll let them do their thing, and not interfere. P.S. There is a Final Fantasy fighting game already in development. Look up FF: Dissidia for PSP.

Avatar image for itwiz90
itwiz90

Like I said before, it is a win win situation for both parties. TECMO can make more games and Square ENix can expand their game types (genre). I think they will make a good combination.

Avatar image for itwiz90
itwiz90

Like I said before, it is a win win situation for both parties. TECMO can make more games and Square ENix can expand their game types (genre). I think they will make a good combination. :P 8)

Avatar image for cooldude03
cooldude03

Tecmo definitly needs to do something. They lost their most passionate original thinker in Itagaki earlier this year. Although Square Enix's only original concept is putting a new name on their carbon copy RPGs. Japanese companies should stick together. Plus no matter my opinion of these two companies they both have contributed some of the most popular franchises in gaming history. The combination of these two companies could only result in positive things.

Avatar image for karateyoyo
karateyoyo

I guess Square would also be taking part in DOA5. Maybe Itagaki will work on it. I don't think they all care about just Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior. I think they want to try something new and see what happens. Square always likes to get new ideas.

Avatar image for Vash67
Vash67

Don't do it Tecmo! SE only cares about Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior, especially in America. I can't shake the feeling SE buying Tecmo would greatly reduce their games that we see. Less Fatal Frame, Ninja Gaiden, Dead or Alive, Monster Rancher(then again, Tecmo hasn't done anything with this series in America in a few years now....)

Avatar image for karateyoyo
karateyoyo

Could that mean there could be Dead Kingdom Fantasy? xD

Avatar image for karateyoyo
karateyoyo

I was RIGHT!!! I WAS RIGHT!!! HALLELUJIA!!! I WAS RIGHT!!! I KNEW whether SEGA or Square Enix would buy off DOA and Ninja Gaiden!!!

Avatar image for tom2b
tom2b

Square-Enix is learning well from it's new masters: Micro$oft. Soon it shall no longer be known as Square-Enix, it soon will be...$QUARE-ENIX!!!!