Board members of the French video games company Gameloft SE resigned Wednesday as a sign of protest following a hostile takeover by French mass media company Vivendi.
Media and entertainment conglomerate Vivendi reportedly owns 95.94 percent of the share capital of the mobile games editor after last month’s takeover battle.
“On a managerial level, Vivendi’s methods are clearly opposite to the vision of the board and the management,” Gameloft said in a statement. “The board of directors cannot accept to become the simple subordinate of decisions of a majority shareholder whose strategic vision and managerial values it doesn't share.”
Gameloft added it had accepted a proposal from Vivendi to name Gameloft’s Chief Financial Officer Alexandre de Rochefort as head of the company’s 39 subsidiaries to facilitate the transition period. The board members’ resignation and Rochefort’s tenure as head of the subsidiaries will be effective Wednesday 8:30 a.m. EDT. The board announced its resignation ahead of a shareholders' meeting due at 9 a.m. on Wednesday.
A Vivendi spokesman wasn’t immediately available for comment, reports said.
Gameloft’s founders, the Guillemot brothers, also founded the multinational video games developer and publisher Ubisoft Entertainment SA. Apart from taking over Gameloft, Vivendi owns 17.7 percent of Ubisoft, reports said.
The Guillemot brothers and Vivendi’s largest shareholder, Vincent Bollore, have been locked in a battle for control of two of France’s video game empires.
The resignations from Gameloft’s board is another episode in this battle. Vivendi had said earlier that it planned to replace the board after the takeover.