American private equity firm Elevation Partners, which counts U2 front-man Bono and ex-Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello amongst its board members, has formally withdrawn its offer for British publisher Eidos Interactive. The move follows the Eidos board of directors’ move to recommend the rival bid from fellow British publisher SCi.
The announcement by Elevation Partners removes any lingering hope by the Eidos board - who at first had favored the equity firm’s bid - that a counter-offer to SCi would be made.
In a statement released today Elevation Partners commented: "The directors of EM Holding [the vehicle through which the company attempted to negotiate the acquisition] note the strong support from Eidos' shareholders that the SCi offer has received and would like to wish Eidos and its stakeholders well under the proposed stewardship of SCi."
This is notably different language than was first used to describe the SCi bid, when Riccitiello proclaimed: “While SCi is a successful company, it has little experience of integrating larger businesses, of running a major international video games company or in managing significant intellectual properties.”
Although it is not impossible for another company to make a last minute rival bid, there has been no hint of interest from elsewhere, which means that the SCi bid will likely be given the go ahead at the Eidos EGM on May 13th.
This will give the UK publisher of the Conflict: Desert Storm
series control of such best-selling franchises as Tomb Raider
, although what the company plans to do with them and Eidos’ existing relationship with its developers is unlikely to be known until after E3.