Posted on March 8, 2008,

Zelnick: Take-Two “Has a Really Bright Future as an Independent Company”

take-two-logo.jpgThere’s been little in the way of developments of Electronic Arts’ proposed acquisition of Take-Two recently – at least publically – but Take-Two’s chairman, Strauss Zelnick, has commented on his optimism on Take-Two’s ability to succeed as an independent company.

“We are very, very excited about interactive entertainment. It’s really the only growth area in the pure entertainment business. That’s why we’re in the Take-Two deal. That will be a really exciting field for the foreseeable future,” he told The Hollywood Reporter.

When asked about the EA deal, Zelnick commented, “We are here for our shareholders. They made a (specific) proposal, we rejected it.” Perhaps unsatisfied with that answer, he was asked if he saw value in consolidation in the games industry. His response:

I think we can expect consolidation. I’d rather not speculate on the nature of value creation. It has a lot to do with the capabilities of individuals and the goals of employees. This is not just a math lesson, this is a creative enterprise. Does consolidation create better games for consumers? Does it create better careers for the creatives? Those questions are just as important. If all stakeholders aren’t taken care of, then none of the stakeholders will benefit. We’ve been at Take-Two only for 10 months and are really proud of the progress we’ve made. And we think this company has a really bright future as an independent company. In the absence of an opportunity that our shareholders value more than this approach, that’s our business model.

Part of me thinks that Zelnick’s building up of Take-Two is simply a method of convincing Take-Two shareholders that the company is worth more than EA has offered. While I personally disagree, I don’t see EA backing down just yet. But for the sake of my love for the NBA 2K series, I really hope they do lay off.

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