Valve Turns Up Its Nose At EA’s Acquisition Advances
Valve Corporation is a private company, one that has suceeded where EA failed, namely; digital stores, customer service and game design. Founded by a bunch of Microsoft refugees, with key founders, Gabe Newell and Mike Harrington, they are veterans in the industry and considered by some as still young. They’ve gone head to head with Vivendi Universal, Activision Blizzard and Blizzard Entertainment and come out on top.
EA has tried “over the years” to buy out Valve, the New York Times reports. The article, published over a week ago and offering a rare glimpse into the quixotic corporate culture of the Valve, cited testimony from two anonymous Valve employees claiming to have knowledge of private discussions between their firm and Electronic Arts. According to the employees, EA has attempted to buy Valve for years, and is prepared to value the company at “well over” $1 billion if the talks had ever become substantial.
Gabe Newell wouldn’t acknowledge any potential offers, but he indicated that a buyout – no matter how lucrative – was not part of his company’s vision for the future. Stating that Valve would sooner “disintegrate” than be sold.
“It’s way more likely we would head in that direction than say, ‘Let’s find some giant company that wants to cash us out and wait two or three years to have our employment agreements terminate,’ ”
Even for Electronic Arts, $1 billion is a lot of money – their 2007 purchase of VG Holding Corp, BioWare and Pandemic Studios’ parent company, holds their buyout record at $775,000,000 – but it’s not surprising to see Newell loathe the idea of acquisition altogether. Currently Valve Corporation has a worth estimated to be around the $2.5 billion mark.
Besides, Steam has plenty of steam, so to speak, left for innovative tech in this industry. Their recently launched Big Picture Mode application looks to marry the digital platform and common household television; plus there’s still plenty of AAA software in the pipeline for fans, and allowing a buyout would simply disrupt all of these wonderful things. I mean, who wants to be bought out by the worst company in America anyways?