Financial website thisismoney.co.uk reports that the top dogs at Codemasters are set to make £47 million if the publisher is sold to EA early next year. Chief executive Frank Sagnier will scoop £20.5m whilst others will get around £10m. It’s also party time for Slightly Mad Studios studios boss Ian Bell who sold the developer to Codemasters last year and got Codemasters shares in exchange which, along with share he already owned, are now valued at £11.5m.
This is all virtual money, the actual value is locked away in shares and can only be released if they are sold, but top Codemasters staff are still set to rake in millions in the shape of retention bonuses which ensure they stay with the company for a certain amount of time.
Shares in Codemasters jumped almost 20% following the announcement of the EA deal and a number of huge investment firms including Morgan Stanley have been snapping up shares, no doubt due to Codemaster publishing revenue and pre-tax profits for the first six months of this year that were more than double than that of last year.
EA will be conducted a year long review to see how they and Codemasters ‘can work most effectively and efficiently together’. They say that this will not lead to a ‘material’ numbers of redundancies but will not commit to any firm number of lay offs until the process is completed.
Earlier this year Codemasters announced a take over deal by Rockstar owners Take-Two, it was to be completed at some point in the first quarter of 2021, and that the purchase will cost Take-Two £726 million/$956 million. The deal has been approved by the boards of directors from both Take-Two and Codemasters but just weeks later EA made a larger offer for the publisher.
However, it seems that although the board of Codemasters is now supporting the EA deal some analysts think Take-Two may not be out of the running yet, and it said that Take-Two ‘is considering its options.’