The Korea Economic Daily reports, via Reuters, that private equity firms Bain Capital, MBK Partners and another undisclosed party have also been shortlisted.
Nexon competitor and South Korean publisher Netmarble was said to have not been invited to join the preliminary bidding stage.
Still in the game?
However, initial reports of that Netmarble's bid suggested it was putting a consortium together for a potential purchase. That was later rumoured to include MBK Partners and Tencent. It’s still possible that Netmarble is in the running with one or both of these firms as partners.
Also seemingly absent from this shortlist are EA, Amazon and Comcast, which recently joined the battle.
Nexon was effectively put up for sale at the start of the year after the company’s founder Kim Jung-ju put all his shares up for sale, worth 98.64 per cent ($8.9 billion) of the company. The shares of his holding company NXC Corp amount to 47 per cent of Nexon.
The Korea Economic Daily claims any acquisition could in fact be worth $13.3 billion. The formal bidding process will start in early April.
Nexon M's Robert Garfinkle will be a speaker at Pocket Gamer Connects Seattle 2019, which takes place on May 13th and 14th.