Due to Microsoft's ongoing acquisition of gaming titans such as Bethesda and Activision Blizzard, concerns of industry consolidation have been steadily growing, many taking guesses at which big publisher will be bought out next. Ubisoft was one of the names being banded around, but it now seems like it won't be acquired after all – at least not yet – as Tencent has announced it has invested over €300 million into the publisher's controlling company.
First shared by Axios Gaming reporter Stephen Totilo, Tencent now owns a 49.9 percent stake in the Guillemot Bros, a company that has the largest stake in Ubisoft and founded by the previous owners of the publisher. The deal will allow Tencent to double its stake in Ubisoft to 9.99 percent and the publisher combined with the Guillemot family can now own 29.9 percent total.
While this might seem like a big deal, the Guillemot family have maintained that this isn't a takeover. Tencent won't be given any board seats in either Guillemot Bros or Ubisoft, won't have any "operational veto rights," and can't increase its stake for eight years. For now, it seems Ubisoft is pretty safe from acquisition, although it seems like Tencent is now first in line if the Guillemot family does decide to sell its remaining stakes in the publisher.
I'd like to say that this was the only bid deal that Tencent has been involved in recently, but the company has been investing in so many things these days that it can be difficult to keep up. For example, Tencent recently acquired 16.25 percent of Elden Ring developer FromSoftware, with Sony also getting in on the action with an investment itself. Tencent and Sony now own a combined 30.94 percent of FromSoftware owner Kadokawa Group, as yet another high-profile acquisition could soon be on the cards.
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