Rumors of Valve Purchase Continue
Published: Monday, October 1, 2012
Updated: Monday, October 1, 2012 16:10
The rumors just keep on coming surrounding Valve and its “potential buyers.”
This time, the rumors came concerning the Korean game publishers Nexon and NCSoft. According to a report from the Korean outlet “JoongAng Ilbo,” the two have been raising cash through real estate deals and selling stock to grab the creators of “Half-Life,” “Left 4 Dead,” “Team Fortress 2” and the digital distribution platform, Steam.
Supposedly, the two companies’ CEOs -- NCsoft’s Taek Jin Kim and Nexon’s Kim Jung-ju --met in September to discuss the possibility of a merger and the eventual acquisition of Valve. Nexon bought a $685 million stake in NCSoft back in June, making it the company’s largest shareholder.
These reports come hot on the heels of a recently published New York Times story, which reported that Electronic Arts had apparently attempted to grab the privately owned Valve for $1 billion. In that same piece, Valve co-founder Gabe Newell let the world know that he would rather see the company “disintegrate” before allowing it to be swallowed up by another corporation.
NCSoft has denied the report, telling both IGN and Polygon that there is no truth to the rumors. Nexon has refused to comment thus far.
Valve was recently valued at about $3 billion dollars.
Nexon does have some connection to Valve, as it licenses the Counter-Strike brand for “Counter-Strike Online,” a first-person shooter developed exclusively for Asian markets. “Counter-Strike Online 2” is currently in development as Valve and Nexon stated this April. However, it’s also worth noting that Electronic Arts also had some dealings with Valve as the company published has published the versions of their games.
It’s likely that this is just another case of Internet rumor-mongering, as Valve clearly neither needs nor desires an acquisition from any other company. In fact, the company seems stronger than ever with Steam still holding the role of the number one digital distribution platform for games software. The company is also preparing to move into the hardware space, as it has already begun plans for beta testing of new devices. That position is also likely to grow as Steam Greenlight and the company’s TV-based Big Picture Mode begin to take root in the community.
The odds of Valve being bought out any time soon, especially with Gabe Newell at the helm, seem incredibly slim.
One possibility is that this is simply a mistranslation or misunderstanding of the Korean publication’s report. Given the history of the companies it’s entirely possible that they’ve decided to move towards some new joint venture.
We’ll keep an eye on the story as more details surface, but for now, you can likely rest assured that Valve will remain the same company that you know and love.