American computer game giant Electronic Arts (EA) has acquired a £ 725 million acquisition of Codemasters, the London-based producer of some of the world’s most famous racing cars.
Sky News has learned that EA has placed a potential bid for Codemasters, beating out an offer agreed last month with Take-Two Interactive Software, the manufacturer of the Red Dead franchise.
A gaming industry source said this weekend that EA has been working with bankers at UBS on its offer.
The interest from the EA, which has a market value of around $ 40 billion (£ 30 billion), will likely be revealed to the stock market on Monday morning.
EA is among the largest developers of computer games in the world, and is best known for its FIFA licensed soccer titles, as well as games inspired by Harry Potter books and Star Wars movies.
The value of the EA bid was unclear, although it is likely to be a significant premium to Codemasters’ closing share price on Friday of 534p.
It’s not certain whether Take-Two, which has a market value of roughly half the size of EA, will respond with a counter offer.
The Take-Two offer was a mix of cash and stocks, meaning that the exact value of the offerings fluctuated according to changes in its New York stock price.
Some fund managers who own Codemasters shares have reportedly expressed dissatisfaction with the Take-Two deal due to its equity component and the relatively modest premium it represents on the untroubled UK company’s share price.
A spokesperson for Codemasters declined to comment, while EA was not immediately available to comment.