Report: Nexon in EA bid

Shares in Electronic Arts are currently up by almost six per cent after a South Korean newspaper claimed that online gaming company Nexon had made contact with the publisher to express an interest in making a takeover bid.

Nexon, which runs the popular Asian MMOG MapleStory and recently announced deals to launch Eve Online and Counter-Strike Online 2 in Asia, hinted last week that it was keen on the acquisition of more game developers, but CFO Owen Mahoney told Bloomberg the company was looking at Japanese mobile developers.

Nexon raised $1.2 billion in the most lucrative Japanese IPO of last year, and had 80 million active users in the final three months of 2011. It can't afford EA outright – it ended last year with around ¥126 billion ($1.55bn) in cash, and EA's market cap is $5.28 billion – but it's had a positive effect on the publisher's share price, which is up 5.66 per cent to $15.86 at the time of writing.

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