Apparently, Ubisoft is preparing to acquire a private equity firm.
That’s according to a report from Bloomberg (via Kotaku), which suggests Blackstone Inc. and KKR & Co., two of the world’s largest venture capital firms, are starting to look for a French publisher for a potential purchase.
Kotaku also reports that some current and former Ubisoft developers believe the sale is inevitable, given the publisher’s weak stock and production issues.
It also reports that Ubisoft has hired a number of consultants in recent years to explore various parts of the business, with the intention of presenting its finances for sale.
Ubisoft’s share price has risen steadily as the potential acquisition in the financial sector has been announced. Despite this, the value of Ubisoft is still about 35% lower than a year ago, because the publisher faces stiff competition and slow production.
Ubisoft has previously fought against a hostile takeover attempt by French media conglomerate Vivendi back in 2018, but publisher CEO Yves Guillemot seems to have changed his mind.
This may be due to the departure of his own son Charlie Guillemot, or the allegations of sexual misconduct that have plagued the publisher for a number of years.
In 2020, Ubisoft promised to conduct a company-wide review following those allegations. Prior to the departure of Ashraf Ismail, creative director of Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla, he resigned following allegations of extravagance.
At the time, Guillemot addressed employees in an internal letter, saying he was “deeply influenced” by what he read on Ubisoft Mana’s internal messaging site.
“I have gathered all my direct reports to discuss this issue and their views. I would like a thorough review of all our systems so that such cases cannot be repeated,” he said.
In other news, Riot Games has introduced Fade, the latest Agent to join Valorant.