UPDATED, July 11: It looks like Tencent has procured an exclusive window to negotiate for the acquisition of Leyou. According to this press release from Leyou, Tencent has three months to finalize a deal with Leyou’s controlling shareholder Charles Yuk to acquire and privatize the company and its subsidiaries, including Digital Extremes and Athlon Games. It’s still possible that the deal might not be finalized, but for now, it’s looking as if Tencent will be adding another gaming studio to its already hefty portfolio.
Original Story: Back in December, we reported on the potential sale of Leyou Technologies by Chinese mobile developer iDreamSky. Leyou, as you may know, owns most of Warframe developer Digital Extremes; iDreamSky, which you may not know, is partially owned by Tencent. Chinese developer Zhejiang Century Huatong Group is also looking to acquire Leyou.
Now that we’re all caught up on those details, it’s time for a new contender to enter the ring: Sony.
The South China Morning Post is reporting that Sony is looking to bid on Leyou as well, which could lead to “an intensified bidding war” for the Hong Kong-based developer, which is valued at approximately $1.23 billion. According to SCMP, Leyou controlling shareholder Charles Yuk is looking to finalize the sale “as soon as this month.”
It’s understandable if fans might view Sony as a better alternative than many of the other potential buyers, considering that it’s a better-known name and Warframe is already on the PlayStation 4. Whoever does wind up taking control of Leyou — and Digital Extremes and Athlon Games — it probably won’t make that much of a tangible difference, but a little positive spin never hurt.
UPDATE: Niko Partners Senior Analyst Daniel Ahmad has unearthed a notice that Leyou’s shares are no longer being traded on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange “pending the release of an announcement pursuant to the Hong Kong Code on Takeovers and Mergers.” That sounds like an announcement is imminent.