Activision Blizzard Breaks Free of Vivendi, Buys Back Shares

(Ping! Zine Web Tech Magazine) – Activision Blizzard is breaking away from parent company Vivendi. On Thursday, the top video game developer behind titles like World of Warcraft and Call of Duty, announced that it would buy back $429 million in shares from Vivendi for the reported price of $5.83 billion.

Vividen will retain a 12% stake in Activision Blizzard. However, the overall move sees Vivendi losing 85% of its shares in the company.

Another part of the deal, meanwhile, sees an investor group led by Activision CEO Robert Kotick and company co-chairman Brian Kelly separately purchasing 172 million of Vivendi’s shares in Activision Blizzard for the price of $2.34 billion.

“These transactions together represent a tremendous opportunity for Activision Blizzard and all its shareholders, including Vivendi. We should emerge even stronger—an independent company with a best-in-class franchise portfolio and the focus and flexibility to drive long-term shareholder value and expand our leadership position as one of the world’s most important entertainment companies. The transactions announced today will allow us to take advantage of attractive financing markets while still retaining more than $3 billion cash on hand to preserve financial stability,” commented Kotick in a press release.

The move arrives before Activision Blizzard is set to release its second quarter financial results for 2013 this Thursday.

Activision had previously merged with Vivendi back in 2008. The deal is expected to close sometime in September.