Vivendi Sells Their Ubisoft Shares, Ending Takeover Fears

By Rebecca Smith,
The Guillemot brothers founded two top gaming companies. Michel founded mobile gaming company Gameloft, while all five founded Ubisoft. Both were public companies until 2016, when media conglomerate Vivendi staged a hostile takeover of Gameloft by acquiring a 56% majority in the ownership. There were fears that Vivendi would do the same to Ubisoft, but it seems like those fears have come to an end after Vivendi sold off its remaining shares in the company as reported by Reuters.

Vivendi has wanted to strengthen its position in the video games sector since 2015, and Ubisoft was one of the company's first targets. Vivendi gradually bought shares in Ubisoft until they had acquired a 27.15% stake in the company by December 2016. With 30% being the mark that would allow them to begin a hostile takeover, the Guillemot brothers fought against the possibility of this happening. By October 2017, the brothers had joined forces with an "investment services provider" to buy back shares and prevent Vivendi from getting their hands on them.

March 2018 was the tipping point, when the two companies reached a deal that would end the possibility of a takeover. Vivendi agreed to sell all of its shares in the company, a process that was completed this month when the company sold its remaining 5.9% stake for a value of €429 million.

Vivendi has now agreed not to buy any Ubisoft shares for the next five years, and will instead focus its efforts on Gameloft, leaving Ubisoft to remain in the hands of the Guillemot brothers for the time being.
Rebecca Smith
Written by Rebecca Smith
Rebecca is the Newshound Manager at TrueGaming Network. She has been contributing articles since 2010, especially those that involve intimidatingly long lists. When not writing news, she works in an independent game shop so that she can spend all day talking about games too. She'll occasionally go outside.