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Perfect World founder launches private buyout bid

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Perfect World founder launches private buyout bid

Chinese online and mobile games publisher Perfect World (NASDAQ:PWRD) has revealed it's received a go-private proposal that values the company at nearly $1 billion.

The offer is said to have come from founder and chairman Michael Yufeng at $20 per ADS, prompting shares to rise by over 22 percent during trading.

Indeed, the ADS's rose to a high of $19.27 in the hours of early trading on Friday.

While it is not yet clear how much of Perfect World Chi already owns, the company has confirmed that it has formed a special committee of independent directors to consider his proposal.

It is thought that Chi, who founded the company in 2004, plans to finance the transaction with a combination of both debt and equity.

A perfect arrangement?

Perfect World is the publisher behind such online multiplayer games as Jade Dynasty, Battle of the Immortals, and the eponymous Perfect World.

The company’s stock fell around 11 percent in 2014, and closed at $15.76 on Wednesday. While this is little changed from its IPO price in July 2007, it’s worth noting that the stock hit a record high of $50.49 in 2009.

2014 was a big year for Perfect World, with Q2 sales rising to $150 million as CEO Robert Xiao told us that he would like to see the company’s revenue mirror the increased market “split between PC games, mobile games and TV games.”

Significantly, Perfect World isn't the only Chinese-based US-floated games company considering going private. 

Shanda Games has been tortuously dealing with a similar approach for the past 12 months, suggesting that Chinese investors do not currently think that US stock markets are the best place to operate.