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EA buying Codemasters for $1.2 billion, outbids Take-Two

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  • Electronic Arts, the American video game publisher behind major gaming franchises like “FIFA,” “Madden,” and “Need for Speed,” is dropping $1.2 billion on the British video game company Codemasters.
  • The company outbid another American video game publisher, Take-Two Interactive, which previously announced intentions to acquire Codemasters for just shy of $1 billion on November 10.
  • Codemasters is a legacy video game publisher that’s most well-known lately for racing franchises like “Grid,” “Dirt,” and “Onrush.”
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

American video game publisher Electronic Arts is dropping $1.2 billion to buy the legacy British games company Codemasters, it announced on Monday.

The newly announced deal trumps an earlier agreement between the British company and the American publisher behind the “Grand Theft Auto” series, Take-Two Interactive, valued at just shy of $1 billion.

Take-Two representatives declined to comment beyond a broad statement: “Take-Two is considering its position in relation to Codemasters and a further announcement will be made when appropriate,” the company said.

Codemasters is a legacy British video game studio that, in recent years, is most well-known for its driving and racing games. Its biggest franchises include “Dirt,” “Grid,” and the “Formula One” series.

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Though EA is most well-known for annual sports franchises like “Madden” and “FIFA,” it’s also responsible for the popular “Need for Speed” racing franchise. “Electronic Arts and Codemasters have a shared ambition to lead the video game racing category,” Codemasters chairman Gerhard Florin said in the announcement.

EA CEO Andrew Wilson echoed Florin’s sentiment. “We believe there is a deeply compelling opportunity in bringing together Codemasters and Electronic Arts to create amazing and innovative new racing games for fans,” he said.

The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of next year.

(Reporting by Tanishaa Nadkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni and Gareth Jones.)

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