In the past year, Vivendi has been stalking Ubisoft like a big game hunter taking aim at an elephant from the tall grass. The conglomerate had been buying Ubisoft stock, highlighted by aof 6.6% of the publisher's stock for €140.3M. This has led to CEO Yves Guillemot having to proclaim Ubisoft would not be taken over.
However, Vivendi has reportedly dumped the last of its share of Activision-Blizzard stocks, amounting to a sale of a 5.7% stake for a cool €1B.
Vivendi at one point had controlling interest of Activision-Blizzard, owning 61% of the company. However, the conglomerate couldn't find a major buyer for the publisher, and sold off chunks of A-B stock. Activision-Blizzard finally got back controlling interest in the company in 2013.
Vivendi's stated reason for dumping Activision-Blizzard shares was basically "selling high" - the company's stock was never more valuable that year, with blockbusters like Skylanders and Call of Duty leading the way.
With Vivendi buying up Ubisoft and Gameloft stock, it seems inevitable that the company will use the revenue from the final Activision-Blizzard sale to buy more stock of each company. Vivendi currently owns 11.25% of Ubisoft and 25% of Gameloft.
In a bit of irony, Activision-Blizzard once owned 15% of Ubisoft stock back in 2010. Imagine if it still owned that stock, forcing Vivendi to pay Activision-Blizzard, the publisher it once owned 61% of, to get controlling interest of yet another gaming company.
Vivendi's takeover of Ubisoft looms as the conglomerate dumps last of Activision-Blizzard stock
15 January 2016 | 1 comment | By Jonah A. Falcon