A number of firms such as Blackstone Inc. and KKR are said to have interest in a takeover of France-based games publisher Ubisoft.
While the exact number is unknown, there are "several private equity firms" interested in Ubisoft according to anonymous sources, as reported by Bloomberg.
Details, however, remain extremely unclear: according to Bloomberg sources, Ubisoft has yet to enter significant discussions with any of the potential buyers and it remains unclear how receptive the publisher would be to any prospective offer.
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Blackstone and KKR, two companies said to be interested in a takeover, have precedent for investing in and around the mobile games industry: Blackstone has invested in Liftoff and Vungle, meanwhile KKR has invested in AppLovin, as well as Epic Games.
Ubisoft itself participated in a seed round for fellow French company Gadsme earlier this month, where $8 million in funding was raised for non-intrusive ads.
Whilst Ubisoft did not give comment to Bloomberg on the takeover interest, the Assassin’s Creed publisher reportedly sees itself as in a strong position to take up this opportunity. The company partnered with The Sandbox earlier this year to bring Rabbids to the metaverse and more recently unveiled Rainbow Six Mobile, a mobile version of its popular five versus five shooter Rainbow Six Siege.
In January 2021, Ubisoft’s stock was at €85.18 per share but declined dramatically since then to €33.97 as of last week. However, as of Monday April 25 – and following Bloomberg’s report – it has started to rise again, up by almost 20 per cent so far.
A buyout of Ubisoft would add to the trend of huge industry deals this year. Last week, a new report from Drake Star Partners revealed that Q1 2022 games industry deals have already exceeded the entirety of 2021.