Activision Blizzard is set to become an independent company GamesIndustry reports as CEO Bobby Kotick leads an $8.2 billion buyout of French telecom giant Vivendi which owns a majority of the shares in the publisher.
The firm will buy 439 million shares from Vivendi for $5.83 billion with an additional 172 million shares being purchased by an investment group led by Kotick and co-chairman Brian Kelly for $2.34 billion.
Activision will become an independent company led by Kotick and Kelly whose investment group also includes Chinese group Tencent – which also owns 40 per cent of Gears of War and Unreal maker EPIC.
"These transactions together represent a tremendous opportunity for Activision Blizzard and all its shareholders, including Vivendi," Kotick commented.
"We should emerge even stronger-an independent company with a best-in-class franchise portfolio and the focus and flexibility to drive long-term shareholder value and expand our leadership position as one of the world's more important entertainment companies."
Kotick's investments group will hold 24.9 per cent of shares in the company with Kelly and he contributing $100 million of their money. Vivendi will continue to hold a 12 per cent stake in the Call of Duty and World of Warcraft maker.