EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

June 5, 2008 -

According to Reuters, Electronic Arts has reached an agreement with the Federal Trade Commission to delay its attempt to acquire Take-Two Interactive while FTC investigators address regulatory [i.e. - monopoly] issues.

What might the FTC be looking into? Newsweek's N'Gai Croal covered this in great detail recently, including mention of my fears that consumers will suffer if EA is successful.

Cnet's Daniel Terdiman wrote yesterday "that [EA is] losing its credibility with each new extension." Frankly, however, I can't see Terdiman's point. Credibility is a non-issue here. The dollars - and government regulatory clearance - will ultimately dictate whether this deal gets done.

Meanwhile, on his Anti-Tust Commentary blog, attorney Matthew Wild offers some legal insight into the EA's strategy:

Under the agreement, EA must give the FTC 45 days’ notice of its intention to close.  Parties often grant the Antitrust Division and FTC more time to review their transactions with the hope of convincing the agencies not to challenge the merger or to allow them to negotiate a remedy.

The most important take-away here is that EA is obviously worried that the FTC may have some concerns about the deal. As a game consumer, it's reassuring to know that regulators are taking a good look at the proposed merger.

As I've pointed out before, EA's track record with the Madden franchise demonstrates that the game publisher is willing to lower prices when faced with serious competition. The Madden case also shows that EA will take agressive steps to eliminate its competition and, if successful, will raise prices in a non-competitive landscape.


Comments

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

I'm glad to see some people are relising that with this takeover EA will be killing a brilliant company and will run it dry then toss the EA-molested left overs aside. EA have had names on some games such as Crysis and Hellgate: London, but unlike some uncivilised people (not refering to anyone here) I see past the big 'EA' logo that you can never skip and look at the REAL designers of the games such as 'Flagship Studios' and 'Crytek'. Admittedly, I do enjoy C&C series, but I have a bad feeling that is going to go downhill soon. The sooner this deal is chucked into a hole and hid away from the world the better.

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SAY NO TO THE EA TAKEOVER!

Cafalump

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

Ugh.... After the whole DRM mess with Spore and Mass Effect (which I am still pissed off about to this day) EA can take a flying leap into a pit of rabid badgers. I'm just so bloody sick of EA destroying so many good companys. In otherwords, keep your dung stained hands off of Take-Two!

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

They killed Need 4 Speed. You Bastards!!!

 

As far as I care, Take-Two are gods.

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

EA bought Hell and then closed it down after interfering with its work which resulted in a sudden drop in quality and sales.

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

EA can go to hell.

 

Thats pretty much all I need to say.

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

"Cnet's Daniel Terdiman wrote yesterday "that [EA is] losing its credibility with each new extension." Frankly, however, I can't see Terdiman's point. Credibility is a non-issue here. The dollars - and government regulatory clearance - will ultimately dictate whether this deal gets done."

I do, every time EA extends it's offer after a deadline, it makes the next deadline much less credible. Thus shareholders won't be in a rush to decide to sell, and are even more likely to hold out for a better offer.

Basically EA said "Here's our offer, take it or leave it, but it expires while you wait." They've keep showing that the "expires" part is false. Now people will be expecting the "take it or leave it" part to be false as well.

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

First, EA ends up buying every video game company, then they flop and go out of business, now we will have another video game crash of 1983.

 

If EA buys T2, I will eat my hat.

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

It's entirely possible that this may be the end of EA sports domination. They gotten to the point where very real damage to the consumer is occurring and competition is not steep enough between the two parties for them to pull a Coke-Pepsi deal.

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

EA, you tried to take them over and they don't want it.  By continuing to find excuses to extend a bid they don't want, you're looking foolish.  You lost, deal with it.

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

"Indeed, we've been down this road before with EA, and it was a train wreck for gamers. Some Joystiq readers will recall the NFL 2K series from Visual Concepts. It was a very good pro football game franchise that originated on the Dreamcast but later migrated over to the PS2 and Xbox. Some reviewers actually came to prefer NFL 2K to EA's Madden series. What's more, Take Two, in a competitive effort to win market share in later years, priced it very aggressively ($19.99). Declining to go that low in price, EA was forced to reduce Madden to $29.99 just to stay competitive (there's that word again).

So what happened next? EA secured an exclusive license with the NFL and NFL Players Association. Quicker than a LaDainian Tomlinson sprint to the end zone, the NFL 2K series ceased to exist. The next edition of Madden, no longer facing competitive pressure from NFL 2K, jumped up in price to $49.99. EA's revenues, of course, shot up. Gamers, however, had to plunk down twenty bucks more than the previous year and lost the opportunity to choose their pro football game based on a competitive comparison of features and price. You either played Madden – at EA's price - or you went home."

'nuff said.
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Papa Midnight
http://www.otakutimes.com
http://www.thesupersoldiers.com

 

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Papa Midnight

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

I know I'm old but I'm sure I can't be the only person here who remembers when EA used to be THE company when it came to top class creative boundary pushing games (Filled polygons on a C64? Barely anyone else used polygons at all and none of them were FILLED!). Nowdays they're still determined to be THE company but only beccause there's no alternative.

It's especially sad given their recent drop in quality output. They got where they are by making stuff that was so good everyone bought it (and this was in the days when piracy only needed a double tape deck) but now they seem to have turned their backs on creativity entirely. It's a sad reversal, like a jedi turning to the dark side or the shop no longer stocking those biscuits you like

Re: EA's Take-Two Takeover Bid on Hold Pending Government Review

Compeition is good for consumers as it encourages lower prices and better products.

It speaks volumes that instead of improving it's product to make it more appealing they're trying to eliminate competition so they can price their half assed product how they see fit. Someone doesn't like it, they can say "You have no choice, haha!!!" which would likely actually hurt EA in the end.

And honestly ,giving all this, if I were a Take Two stock holder, I'd have decided not ot sell long ago.

-kurisu7885

 
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Matthew WilsonDanny and Andy play the first couple of levels of the upcoming Hatred http://www.gamespot.com/videos/hatred-gamespot-plays/2300-6425016/ imho it does not look like it should be AO.05/28/2015 - 5:57pm
Andrew EisenHey, remember Kung Fury? That short film that was funded via Kickstarter a few years ago? You can watch it now. I suggest you do. It's fun! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bS5P_LAqiVg05/28/2015 - 5:14pm
Goth_SkunkOriginally, yes. Some content was cut out in order to reduce its ratign from AO down to M, but PC users could work around that an unlock the full content by means of a patch. Which is what I did. :D05/28/2015 - 3:56pm
Andrew EisenKarp - Yes, for strong sexual content. Although the recent remaster contains all that content and was rated M.05/28/2015 - 3:54pm
Andrew EisenDepends on if you consider Hatred misrated. I haven't played the game or seen the ESRB's rating summary so I'm undecided.05/28/2015 - 3:53pm
WonderkarpDidnt Fahrenheit have an AO?05/28/2015 - 3:52pm
Matthew Wilson@AE that is why I said it seems more moral panic to me.05/28/2015 - 3:51pm
Andrew EisenMatthew - From what I've seen (just the trailers) the game is nowhere near as gory as many, many other games. But again, I'm guessing the AO rating comes from theme and tone rather than outright gore.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
Andrew EisenKarp - It didn't show penetration or nudity.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
WonderkarpI'd say Mortal Kombat X has more Gore and Violence than Hatred.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
Matthew Wilsonwhat I mean by worse in this case its not more gory/violent than others.05/28/2015 - 3:48pm
WonderkarpI forget....did Hot Coffee actually show Penetration?05/28/2015 - 3:48pm
Andrew EisenKarp - The Skyrim mods are external mods. The Hot Coffee mod unlocked content on the disc. Big difference. Still, the content that was unlocked was still perfectly in line with an M rating in my opinion.05/28/2015 - 3:47pm
Andrew EisenThemes are factored into ratings, not just mechanics. Still waiting for ESRB's rating summary. Very curious to see what it has to say.05/28/2015 - 3:46pm
Matthew WilsonHatred is a top down shooter though, and isnt any worse than other top down shooters?05/28/2015 - 3:45pm
Wonderkarpyeah, San Andreases rerating was ridiculous. Why not rerate Skyrim with all its crazy sex mods out there? But yeah, ESRB is good as policing itself. 05/28/2015 - 3:45pm
Andrew EisenManhunt 2 and Hatred though? Eh, there's an argument to be made for the higher rating.05/28/2015 - 3:43pm
Andrew EisenRerating San Andreas was a mistake though. That seemed to be the result of kowtowing to public pressure.05/28/2015 - 3:42pm
Andrew EisenThere wasn't one. It's just a dumb rating.05/28/2015 - 3:42pm
WonderkarpI dont see Moral Panic with a racing game though05/28/2015 - 3:40pm
 

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