Ubisoft shares fall on Vivendi acquisition denial

6th January 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Jan 6 (AFP) - Shares in Ubisoft Entertainment fell sharply Thursday following a denial by media giant Vivendi Universal that it was considering a bid for the French videogame maker to thwart a takeover by Electronic Arts of the United States.

PARIS, Jan 6 (AFP) - Shares in Ubisoft Entertainment fell sharply Thursday following a denial by media giant Vivendi Universal that it was considering a bid for the French videogame maker to thwart a takeover by Electronic Arts of the United States.

Ubisoft shares, which rose 10.89 percent on Wednesday on a press report that Vivendi was interested in a tie-up, had fallen 3.71 percent in early trade to EUR 26.19. Vivendi Universal was down 0.29 percent to 24.35 on a slightly stronger overall Paris market.

A report in the French business newspaper L'Agefi had said Vivendi and Ubisoft had held preliminary talks. But Vivendi later denied that any such talks had taken place and Ubisoft, on Thursday, likewise said it had not been in contact with a potential partner.

Analysts nonetheless said Vivendi might consider an arrangement to support Ubisoft short of an actual takeover.

Electronics Arts, the world leader in the videogame sector, bought almost 20 percent of Ubisoft late last month in a move Ubisoft called hostile.

Electronic Arts, based in Redwood City, California, bought its EUR 60 million (USD 80 million) stake as a block of shares from investment firm Talpa Beheer B.V. The purchase reportedly made the US group EA the second-largest shareholder in Ubisoft after the founding Guillemot family, which holds around 23 percent.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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