Activision Blizzard buys its freedom

In the early hours of Friday, July 26th Activision Blizzard bought itself freedom to operate independently from major French corporation, Vivendi.  The asking price was 8.2 billion dollars or 429 million shares.

This break from Vivendi was led by private investors Davis Advisors, Leonard Green & Partners and Tencent.  The private investing group owns about a 24.9% stake in the company.   The current CEO Robert Kottick and Co-Chairman Brian Kelly, will remain in their current positions and also committed 100 million dollars of their own money.  Vivendi will still have an interest in Activision Blizzard, but it won’t be a controlling one.  They will own 12% or 83 million shares.

Robert Kottick took hold of a nearly-bankrupt Activision when he merged with Blizzard back in 2008.  The company now has almost 17 billion dollars in market capitalization.  Kottick stated his company is “still retaining more than 3 billion cash on hand to preserve financial stability”.  As of this writing, Activision Blizzard (ATVI) ended the day at $17.46 in market price, up $2.28 from its opening price at the start of Friday’s trading day.