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Activision pay $8.2 billion to go Indie

by William Schwartz

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Activision Blizzard have completed their 8.2billion dollar deal with Vivendi to become an Independant company, or ‘Indie’. Destructoid report that the large French conglomerate, Vivendi, previously owned over 600 million shares in Activision. The Call of Duty publisher announced the multi-billion buyback at the end of July, but it has only just become official.

Activision Blizzard themselves will actually be buying “about 429 million of its shares… from Vivendi for roughly $5.83 billion in cash,” while CEO Bobby Kotick and co-chairman Brian Kelly lead an internal investment. They have purchased an additional 172 million shares of Activision Blizzard for approximately $2.34 billion. This equates to roughly 25% of the company.

In relation to the massive buyback, Kotick had the following to say; “we open a new chapter in the history of Activision Blizzard. We expect immediate shareholder benefits in the form of… operational independence.” He went on to describe how this change would benefit gamers, “Our audiences and our incredibly talented employees around the world will benefit from a focused commitment to the creation of great games.”

So don’t expect big changes from long running series like World of Warcraft or Call of Duty, or anticipate Activision to start attending Indie conventions to show off their latest alpha project. On the other hand, this could mean positive things for the industry giant moving forward. They no longer have to satisfy a ‘sugar daddy’, and can pursue their own ideas and projects.

What effect do you think this will have on the gaming industry? Does it matter? Leave a comment below.

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