Vivendi Tagged Articles RSS Feed | Vivendi RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Vivendi is the new Gameloft; what does that mean for Ubisoft? Mon, 06 Jun 2016 23:27:31 -0400 Sagger Khraishi

Earlier this month, the French Conglomerate Vivendi bought out 61.7% of shares of Gameloft. In what is called a hostile takeover, Vivendi is taking this as a step into the path of taking over the French branch of Ubisoft. As the former owner of Activision-Blizzard, it sold its 85% stake in the company in 2013 for $8 billion.

Since then, Vivendi moved off to multiple industries. From music with Universal Music Group, to digital media with Dailymotion, it seems like they are trying to come back into video games. But with pushing off the CEO of Gameloft, it is expected that Vivendi will be able to worm its way into the Ubisoft board at the next shareholders meeting in September.

Ubisoft isn't taking this news lying down though. Since they have the Ubisoft Montreal branch, a foreign takeover could place thousands of jobs at risk. Looking for a white knight to protect them, Ubisoft has been talking to Canadian investors as well as the Canadian Government for protection.

As a response to the takeover, Vivendi issued an email to Gameloft's employees that urges them to stay. This was made evident in a return to the CEO of Gameloft's email, which was leaked by a current employee.

So what does this mean for you? The current games line-up has already been decided for Gameloft for the next year, which means that there isn't much to worry about on that front. And given Vivendi's previous history with Activision-Blizzard, chances are that Vivendi will not sabotage the company in an effort to make even more money. But for employees who are loyal to the Guillemot brothers, who founded both Ubisoft and Gameloft, they might leave the new company. This move could be a "f*** you" to the French conglomerate and show their independence.

Either way, it will be worth keeping an eye out on what will happen, with Ubisoft and Gameloft, over the next few weeks.

Former majority owner of Activision buys stock in Ubisoft and Gameloft Thu, 15 Oct 2015 15:35:02 -0400 Cameron Patel

The French media company Vivendi, once famous for being the majority shareholder of Activision, has shown a renewed interest in the video game industry after buying a 6.6% stake in Ubisoft and a 6.2% stake in Gameloft.

Vivendi owned a 63% controlling stake in Activision, but due to restructuring, they decided to sell the majority of their shares, now only holding 6% ownership in the company. They intially sold the majority of their shares for $8.17 billion, and later sold another 5.8% for $850 million.

In response to Vivendi's purchase of Gameloft stock, Gameloft issued a press release:

"We take note of the unsolicited action on the part of Vivendi. We reiterate our intention to remain independent, an approach that, since our founding 16 years ago, enabled us to become a world leader in mobile gaming, and from 2015, a significant and fast growing actor of mobile advertising. "

Vivendi's interest in the companies could be alarming, considering that their investment of about $183 million in both companies seems like an almost meager amount compared to their $10 billion dollar warchest, gained from the sales of many of their assets over the past few years - no small part of which came from Activision. 

Why do you think Vivendi is so interested in this companies. What do you make of their investment? Let me know in the comments!

Blizzard Files for Emergency Appeal Wed, 25 Sep 2013 00:07:53 -0400 Mary Yeager

In a move to block an $8 billion dollar deal between Activision Blizzard and parent company Vivendi, a preliminary injunction has been filed in a Delaware Chancery Court. The injunction was placed due to multiple lawsuits by shareholders of the company. The deal will continued to be blocked until it can be approved by the stockholders. The hearing is set for October 10th about the appeal set in motion by Activision Blizzard.

Through the sale, Activision Blizzard will become their own company while Vivendi would continue to hold 12 percent stake in the business. The total purchase is approximately 429 million shares in the company. This would equal $5.83 billion in cash value.

Assisted by investors, the management team of Activision Blizzard created the deal. Shareholders would have shares that would entitle them some control in the company.

Despite the shareholders having control, one shareholder stated that it would "unjustly enrich Kelly, Kotick, and other participants."

The One Company to Rule Them All... Well, It's Sort of a Tie. Fri, 10 May 2013 00:03:30 -0400 MirandaCB

“What is your favorite game development company?” Well, that is a really difficult question on the face of it. I don’t know about you, but I don’t try to rank my favorite companies too often, but I was posed with this question recently and it really got me thinking. I found I was loyal to two different companies and I bet I’m not the only one.

Not The Average History Lesson Coming Your Way

The first developer many people know, however fewer people may know what has happened to them. Blizzard North was a subsidiary of the larger company Blizzard Entertainment and these were the guys (Blizzard North) who created Diablo I, II, and Lord of Destruction. Originally named Condor, Blizzard North was acquired by Blizzard in 1996 just before the release of the first Diablo. Blizzard North went on to create the second Diablo in the series which garnered huge sales, breaking records across the board and held the title throughout the community at the time for the best plot in an RPG. Needless to say, the game was nearly perfect, especially given where the story left off in the first game. Naturally the company came out with an expansion which was set immediately after the events of the core game and added in arguably unnecessary, but wonderful features that really boosted the game’s replay-ability and longevity.

This segment of the company was originally supposed to create Diablo III, the final part in the epic trilogy, however the publisher at the time, Vivendi, did not approve of the development quality of the game and the original creators of Blizzard North were defunct. It was a real shame because many diehard fans of Blizzard North’s game style were skeptical when Jay Wilson came on to develop the third Diablo as he had never been an influence on the games previously.

The second company, which has gotten enormous press lately as well as a few years ago with the first smash hit, is known as Irrational Games. For those of you who live under a rock, Irrational Games is most known for Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite as well as the lesser known System Shock 2. After being acquired by Take-Two Interactive, under the 2K Games publishing arm, Bioshock was released and caused some serious waves in the industry. Bioshock put Irrational on the map and truly solidified a place in my heart, but they didn’t stop there. Bioshock Infinite was truly everything people were hoping and more.

Considered by many as more than a game, but a true work of art, Bioshock Infinite is proof the perfection of the first Bioshock was not a fluke. Apart from the game mechanics being superb and the visual being stunning at every turn, Bioshock Infinite provided a story as well as several characters that the player was emotionally invested in. Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite were very far from the idea that it was an achievement to “finish” a game and much more about the invested experience of playing the through story. And the best part? Each of these games were worth at least one additional play through because the end game twist threw so much information in the player’s face that it was a real treat to go back and see all of the things that the player missed on the first play through that lead up to the finale.

Now, because Blizzard North technically no longer exists, I guess you could say Irrational Games takes the cake for my favorite. The shear quality that these two companies pumped out have been astounding in their own way and deserve some serious recognition.