Eidos crashes as takeover talks fail

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The Independent Online

Eidos, the beleaguered maker of computer games such as Tomb Raider starring Lara Croft, saw its shares slump yesterday after the company said talks with a potential buyer had collapsed.

Eidos, the beleaguered maker of computer games such as Tomb Raider starring Lara Croft, saw its shares slump yesterday after the company said talks with a potential buyer had collapsed.

The announcement follows the resignation of Eidos' chief financial officer, Jeremy Lewis, last Friday and two profit warnings this year. The company's shares closed 13.4 per cent down at 255p, bringing the decline since Thursday to 18 per cent.

Eidos, which recently launched the Who Wants to be a Millionaire? computer game, said in June that it had been approached by a potential bidder, later revealed to be Infogrames, Europe's biggest video game maker. At that time Eidos shares were trading at about 550p.

The all-share indicative offer "wasn't in the ballpark of what the board thought was best for shareholders," said Eidos chief operating officer, Mike McGarvey, yesterday, adding that the company had decided to remain a stand-alone business. Sources close to Eidos said the offer was "barely a premium" on the current share price.

However, according to insiders yesterday, an internal memo at Infogrames about a month ago informed staff that the company was not interested in buying Eidos. Infogrames would not comment.

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