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Electronic Arts searches for a deal

May 23, 2022
Illustration of a hundred dollar bill as a video game controller.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson's eyes and ears are wide open for a sale, Puck's Dylan Byers scooped.

Why it matters: A sale or merger would be another massive consolidation of the gaming industry coming on the heels of Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard.

Details: Comcast CEO Brian Roberts approached Wilson this year with a proposal to spin off NBCUniversal and merge it with EA, but the deal fell apart over disagreements about the price and structure, Byers reports.

  • Wilson has held talks with other potential suitors including Disney, Apple and Amazon, per Byers.
  • "We don't comment on rumors and speculation relating to M&A. We are proud to be operating from a position of strength and growth, with a portfolio of amazing games, built around powerful IP, made by incredibly talented teams, and a network of more than half a billion players. We see a very bright future ahead," EA spokesperson John Reseburg said.

State of play: Just this year, there have been several big deals in gaming.

  • Microsoft is buying Activision Blizzard for $69 billion.
  • Sony is buying Bungie for $3.6 billion.
  • Take-Two just completed its acquisition of Zynga for $12.7 billion.

💭 Kerry's thought bubble: Merging with EA would fold more IP under and drive more attention to NBCUniversal, similar to what Netflix has been doing by buying up a bunch of gaming studios.

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