US publishing giant Electronic Arts has put more money on the table for UK racing specialist Codemasters than Take-Two.
In a release from its investor relations page, the firm said that it has made an offer of 604p – roughly $7.98 - per share for the company, which clocks up to an impressive $1.2bn. That's a fair bit more than the $994m offer that Codemasters accepted from Grand Theft Auto giant Take-Two Interactive just last month.
This deal is being conducted via a newly-formed Electronic Arts subsidiary called Codex Games, which was incorporated in the UK just days ago on December 9th.
“Electronic Arts and Codemasters have a shared ambition to lead the video game racing category," Codemasters chair Gerhard Florin said.
"The Board of Codemasters firmly believes the company would benefit from EA’s knowledge, resources and extensive global scale – both overall and specifically within the racing sector. We feel this union would provide an exciting and prosperous future for Codemasters, allowing our teams to create, launch and service bigger and better games to an extremely passionate audience."
EA CEO Andrew Wilson (pictured) added: “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. Our industry is growing, the racing category is growing, and together we will be positioned to lead in a new era of racing entertainment. We have admired Codemasters’ creative talent and high-quality games for many years. With the full leverage of EA’s technology, platform expertise, and global reach, this combination will allow us to grow our existing franchises and deliver more industry-defining racing experiences to a global fan base. We are pleased that both our Boards of Directors are recommending this transaction, and we look forward to welcoming such an exciting and talented team to the Electronic Arts family."
EA already has a number of racing studios in its portfolio. The firm acquired Burnout maker Criterion back in 2004 and also owns Need for Speed developer Ghost Games.
In a release, Take-Two has noted EA's offer and is "considering its position in relation to Codemasters and a further announcement will be made when appropriate."