Lara Croft Developer SCi In Takeover Discussions

SCi (LON:SEG), the holding company of Tomb Raider and Hitman developer Eidos, has confirmed it has entered takeover discussions with an unnamed company. Dow Jones said Ubisoft (FRA.UBI) had been ready to make a bid. SCi, which was formed when SCi Games acquired Eidos Interactive in 2005 and uses the latter’s name publicly, issued a statement to the London Stock Exchange: “Following the recent speculation in the press, the Board of SCi Entertainment Group plc (“SCi”) confirms that it has received an approach and as a result has entered into extremely preliminary discussions regarding a possible offer.” The statement went on to say that no offer had yet been made.

Ubisoft spokesman Emmanuel Carre, via Dow Jones: “We are not in discussion with SCi Entertainment any more than we are with any other company in the industry.” SCi has turned around an unprofitable Eidos but is pressured by the migration of Playstation 2 users to other platforms. Evening Standard fingered Time Warner (NYSE:TW) and Electronic Arts (Nasdaq: ERTS) as possible suitors, along with Ubisoft; Time Warner already has an agreement with SCi to produce a raft of games for its TV brands. SCi stock was trading around 13 percent up at 383.75 just ahead of the market’s close.