Los Angeles Business Journal

Stock Little Affected by Activision's Blocked Deal

By Natalie Jarvey Thursday, September 19, 2013

Activision Blizzard Inc. investors barely reacted to the news Thursday that a Delaware court had blocked the video game publisher's plan to buy back a significant ownership stake from parent company Vivendi.

Activision released a statement Wednesday evening pledging its commitment to completing the transaction, which would return 429 million shares to the Santa Monica publisher for $5.8 billion in cash.

In a separate transaction, a group of investors – led by Activision Chief Executive Bobby Kotick and director Brian Kelly – would buy $2.3 billion in company stock.

If the sale is completed, Kotick's group would become Activision's largest shareholder with a 25 percent stake. Meanwhile, Vivendi's stake in Activision would drop from 61 percent to 12 percent.

The company must now wait for an appeal or hold a shareholder vote to continue with the buyback, which was originally expected to be completed by the end of the month.

Shareholder Douglas Hayes filed the suit against Activision, arguing that the deal should be approved by shareholders.

Shares closed down 5 cents, or less than 1 percent, to $17.10 for the day.