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Report: Vivendi moving ahead with 'hostile takeover' of Gameloft (update)

Company continues to set sights on Ubisoft

Bloomberg reports that Vivendi has won the support of mobile game developer Gameloft's majority shareholders, enabling the company to move forward with a takeover. Following last week's news that another of Gameloft's biggest funders offered to back the French entertainment company, Vivendi has reportedly received further stock offers and will proceed with its "hostile bid" of Gameloft, according to Bloomberg.

Vivendi already owns more than 30 percent of Gameloft, and issued a mandatory bid for majority control of the company in February, as required by French law. Vivendi has long set sights not just on the mobile developer, but on its founding family's other major company: Ubisoft Entertainment, similarly owned by the Guillemot family. Launching a bid to gain control of Ubisoft is said to be Vivendi's next move, according to the report.

The Guillemots have not assented their shares to Vivendi, Bloomberg said. Instead, the founders are investigating outside backers who can help prevent a potential takeover of both Gameloft and Ubisoft. In February, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said that the company was looking to its Canadian shareholders to increase its control and defend against a Vivendi bid. Currently, Ubisoft is said to be consulting with financial advisors and further investors to protect its capital.

Ubisoft, which celebrated a banner fiscal year earlier this month, thanks to the success of games like Tom Clancy's The Division, is valued at 3.6 billion euros ($4.4 billion). Gameloft's valuation sits at 700 million euros ($780.2 million).

We've reached out to representatives from Gameloft and Vivendi about the takeover, including when such a bid would officially take place. We'll update accordingly.

Update: Vivendi has published an open letter to Gameloft employees, explaining the companies' newfound "collective adventure."

"You will join shortly an international content and media group where creativity is the heart of its organization and its activities," the note, dated May 31, reads. "We are very pleased to welcome you and to pool your talents with ours, so that together, we will be a stronger presence on the worldwide entertainment market."

Senior executives from Vivendi will be meeting with Gameloft employees to discuss their future with the company, according to the letter. Mentioned in these future plans is the creation of new mobile content; Gameloft has found success as a developer of mobile games.

Although the letter doesn't make it explicit, it appears all but officially confirmed that Vivendi now owns majority shares in Gameloft, the sister company of Ubisoft Entertainment.

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