Newly Independent Company Now Majority Owned by Public Shareholders
SANTA MONICA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--
Activision Blizzard, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI), a global leader in interactive
entertainment, announced today that it had successfully completed its
previously announced acquisition of approximately 429 million company
shares and certain tax attributes from Vivendi (Euronext Paris: VIV) for
approximately $5.83 billion, or $13.60 per share in cash. ASAC II LP, an
investment vehicle led by Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick and
Chairman Brian Kelly, has also completed its purchase of approximately
172 million company shares from Vivendi for approximately $2.34 billion
in cash, or $13.60 per share, in a separate transaction.
The shares Activision Blizzard purchased in the transaction will no
longer be treated as outstanding, leaving the majority of the remaining
690 million shares in the hands of public shareholders. With the closing
of the transaction, ASAC II LP—the investor group which, in addition to
Kotick and Kelly, includes Davis Advisors, Leonard Green & Partners,
L.P., Tencent, and one of the world's largest global institutional
investors—now owns approximately 24.7% of the Company. Vivendi has
retained 83 million shares, an approximate 12% stake in the Company.
Activision's stock purchase was financed with a combination of
approximately $1.2 billion of domestic cash on hand and recently issued
debt, including $1.5 billion of 5.625% senior notes due 2021, $750
million of 6.125% senior notes due 2024, and a $2.5 billion seven-year
term loan facility. The entire $4.75 billion of debt financing has a
weighted average annual interest rate of less than 5%.
"With the completion of this transaction we open a new chapter in the
history of Activision Blizzard," Mr. Kotick said. "We expect immediate
shareholder benefits in the form of earnings-per-share accretion and
strategic and operational independence. Our audiences and our incredibly
talented employees around the world will benefit from a focused
commitment to the creation of great games. Our shareholders and debt
holders will have the benefit of an energized, invested, deeply
committed management team focused on generating long-term, superior
returns and effectively managing our capital structure."
Activision Blizzard received committed financing for the transaction
from Bank of America Merrill Lynch and J.P. Morgan. J.P. Morgan
Securities LLC acted as Activision Blizzard's sole financial advisor for
the transaction and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP provided
legal counsel to the Company. A special committee of independent
directors formed to represent the Company in negotiating and evaluating
the transactions worked with Centerview Partners as its financial
advisor and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz as its legal counsel. ASAC II
LP worked with financial advisor Allen & Company LLC and its legal
counsel is Sullivan & Cromwell LLP.
About Activision Blizzard
Activision Blizzard, Inc. is the world's largest and most profitable
independent interactive entertainment publishing company. It develops
and publishes some of the most successful and beloved entertainment
franchises in any medium, including Call of Duty, World of Warcraft,
Skylanders, and Diablo®.
Headquartered in Santa Monica California, it maintains operations
throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. Activision Blizzard
develops and publishes games on all leading interactive platforms and
its games are available in most countries around the world. More
information about Activision Blizzard and its products can be found on
the company's website, www.activisionblizzard.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements including, but
not limited to, those relating to the expected impact of the
transactions described herein. The forward-looking statements in this
release are based upon information available to the Company as of the
date of this release, and the Company assumes no obligation to update
any such forward-looking statements. Although these forward-looking
statements are believed to be true when made, they may ultimately prove
to be incorrect. These statements are not guarantees of the future
performance of the Company and are subject to risks, uncertainties and
other factors, some of which are beyond its control and may cause actual
results to differ materially from current expectations.
Activision Blizzard Investor Relations:
Vice President, IR and Treasurer
Source: Activision Blizzard, Inc.
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