British game developer and publisher Codemasters has announced to their shareholders that it has received a non-binding offer from Take-Two Interactive to buy the company.

The basic terms of the deal are that Take-Two would pay 485 pence per share, 120 pence cash, the rest in Take-Two stock.  Take-Two's offer values the company at £739.19 million GBP ($973.48 million USD).  It is contingent upon Take-Two completing a full course of due diligence and the recommendation of Codemasters' board of directors to take the deal.  At present, the Codemasters board is reportedly unanimous in their position that the deal should be accepted, according to Gamesindustry.biz.

Talks are still ongoing and the offer is not final, so details such as the cash-to-stock ratio may be altered.  Take-Two will need to submit a binding offer no later than December 4, though that deadline can be extended with approval from British regulators.

Food For Thought

As far as Codemasters is concerned, getting an offer which values the company 11% higher than its current market cap is not bad.  It's unlikely that Take-Two will simply gobble the company up and digest its assets, but could serve to help boost the profile of the DIRT and GRID series of racing games.  Or it could simply be a safety blanket against difficult economic times.  The deal definitely works out in Take-Two's favor, as it provides a ready-made entry into the racing genre rather than having to try and build up its own studios for that purpose.  Additionally, it provides potential avenues for reviving other series from both companies, such as dungeon building RPG Overlord (from Codemasters) or the Midnight Club racing games (from Take-Two).