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Finnish video game maker Rovio Entertainment has agreed to a $775 million sale to Japanese gaming firm Sega that will bring together the companies’ iconic Angry Birds and Sonic the Hedgehog franchises under one roof.
Sega unveiled a recommended cash offer of 9.25 euros ($10.15) per share to Rovio shareholders and 1.48 euros ($1.62) per option to the company’s option holders Monday.
“The total value of the offer, based on all 76,179,063 issued and outstanding shares in Rovio and all 742,300 issued and outstanding options … amounts in aggregate to approximately 706 million euros,” or $775 million, the companies said. “Shareholders in Rovio who in aggregate hold shares corresponding to approximately 49.1 percent of the outstanding shares and votes in Rovio, have irrevocably undertaken to accept the offer, subject to certain customary conditions.
The board of directors of Rovio has unanimously agreed to recommend that shareholders and option holders accept the offer.
Its price tag represents a premium to Rovio shares, the firms said. The premium amounts to approximately 63.1 percent compared to the closing price of 5.67 euros for Rovio’s stock on Jan. 19, the last day of trading before the announcement of a 683 million euro ($735 million) bid for Rovio by Israel’s Playtika. Talks about that offer ended in late March, but Rovio continued to explore its options.
The price tag offered by Sega marks a premium of approximately 19.0 percent over Rovio shares’ closing price Friday and 17.5 percent compared to their volume-weighted average trading price during the last three months.
“I grew up playing (Sega’s) Sonic the Hedgehog, captivated by its state-of-the-art design,” said Rovio CEO Alexandre Pelletier-Normand. “Later, when I played Angry Birds for the first time, I knew that gaming had evolved into a true mainstream phenomenon, with the power to shape modern culture.”
He added: “Our mission is to ‘craft joy,’ and we are thrilled at the idea of using our expertise and tools to bring even more joy to our players, enhancing and expanding Rovio’s and Sega’s vibrant IPs. Red and Sonic: two globally recognized and iconic characters made by two remarkably complementary companies, with a worldwide reach that spans mobile, PC/console and beyond. Combining the strengths of Rovio and Sega presents an incredibly exciting future.”
Haruki Satomi, president and group CEO of Sega parent company Sega Sammy Holdings, added: “Among the rapidly growing global gaming market, the mobile gaming market has especially high potential, and it has been Sega’s long-term goal to accelerate its expansion in this field. I feel blessed to be able to announce such a transaction with Rovio, a company that owns Angry Birds, which is loved across the world, and home to many skilled employees that support the company’s industry-leading mobile game development and operating capabilities.”
He added: “I am confident that, through (the) combination of both companies’ brands, characters, fan base, as well as corporate culture and functionality, there will be significant synergies created going forward.”
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