Chinese social media giant Tencent has agreed to buy British video games developer Sumo Group, of which it already owns an 8.75% stake, as part of its continuing international campaign focused on acquiring gaming firms.
The deal is priced at £919 million (US$1.26 billion), according to Sumo Group, with Tencent’s offering of 513p per share in cash, via its subsidiary Sixjoy Hong Kong, a premium of about 43% on Sumo's closing share price of 358p on Friday before the deal was announced. The offer price is considerably above Sumo's all-time high of 407p.
Tencent, which owns Supercell, the Finnish makers of Clash of Clans, and US-based League of Legends developer Riot Games, also has minority stakes in Activision Blizzard, Epic Games, Voodoo, Frontier Developments and Ubisoft.
“Tencent intends to bring its expertise and resources to accelerate the growth of Sumo both in the UK and abroad, supporting Sumo in the market for top-tier creative talent, and the UK as a hub for game innovation,” says James Mitchell, chief strategy officer and senior executive vice-president of Tencent. “The proposed transaction benefits all stakeholders, and delivers compelling value for Sumo shareholders, while enhancing Sumo’s capabilities for the future.”