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Nexon Founder Reportedly Selling Controlling Stake, EA and Tencent in List of Potential Buyers

The Korea Economic Daily newspaper (via Reuters) has reported that the founder of South Korean company, Nexon, is planning to sell his controlling stake worth $9 billion in holding firm NXC Corp. Potential buyers of Kim Jung-ju’s share reportedly include Chinese company Tencent and publishing giant Electronic Arts.

Founded in Seoul and headquartered in Tokyo, Nexon has hired Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley to manage the sale, according to KED’s sources. However, neither of the two companies have released an official statement yet.

Meanwhile, Nexon affiliates saw their stock value increase by as much as 30 percent after the publication of KED’s report.

Nexon’s American subsidiary recently went through some troubles after it was forced to write off LawBreakers as a loss, which it partly blamed on the game launching around the same time as PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. In February 2018, a month after this development, Nexon America suffered layoffs.

LawBreakers was developed by the now-defunct studio, Boss Key Productions. The company was led by Cliff Bleszinski, who subsequently announced his permanent departure from the video games industry.

Nexon was also one of the companies affected by China’s video game freeze last year, which has since been lifted.

Interestingly, former EA and DICE executive, Patrick Söderlund, announced back in November 2018 that he was teaming up with Nexon to set up a new company called Embark Studios. He revealed during an earnings call in Tokyo that the publisher had invested in his startup.

While Söderlund hasn’t announced what he’s working on, he hinted that we’ll hear something soon.

[Source: Korea Economic Daily via Reuters]