Shanda (SNDA) today announced that it has entered into an agreement to purchase approximately 29% of Korea's Actoz Soft Company, a developer, operator and publisher of online games. The all cash purchase transaction from shareholders of Actoz is worth approximately US$91.7 million.
The transaction will solidify an alliance between one of the largest operators of online games in China and a leading supplier of online game content to the China market. Actoz owns 50% of the copyright for The Legend of Mir II, which is the most popular online game in China according to users surveyed in late 2003 by International Data Center. In addition, Actoz also owns all or a portion of the copyrights for several other online games that are operated in China, including the Legend of Mir III and the 3D game A3. Actoz is also developing additional online game content and has track a record of assisting studios in producing successful online games for the China market.
Shanda operates Mir II in China along with a number of other online games, including BNB, the most popular casual online game in China according to the IDC survey. The strategic investment will help to secure an extension of Shanda's license to operate Mir II in China.
Choi Woong, chief executive officer of Actoz, said, "Actoz is supportive of the deal. We believe that an alliance between a leading supplier of online game content to China and the leading operator of online games in China makes sense. We look forward to working closely together with Shanda to seize the opportunities presented by this deal to create value for our shareholders."