updated 08:33 pm EDT, Wed June 18, 2014
Game company defense in place since 2008, majority number of bids not met
Video game developer Capcom may be left vulnerable to a stock buyout after shareholders failed to meet a majority number of votes to renew a takeover defense this week. Capcom first issued the takeover defense in 2008 to combat large-scale share purchases to gain a voice within the company. It was indicated that the company was looking to issue a renewal when it posted the 25-page plan in May.
During a recent meeting of shareholders, the vote failed to garner enough support to keep the takeover defense in place. When the block was first conceived, the company implemented a long plan to prevent other game companies or outside interests from stepping in to change its direction. At the time, Capcom had 64 million shares issued across 15,000 holders.
Capcom recently announced that it hit a total revenue of $1 billion for its fiscal year that ended in March. Revenues were up 8.6 percent from the previous year, which ended at $922 million. However, the company has struggled to find its footing in some areas of its business, including the mobile gaming market.
By not passing a vote on the defense, it is possible for investors to come in and acquire a majority stake in the company, if enough stock is purchased. It could mean that a hostile takeover is in Capcom's future. However, the company said that it will take action, within legal limits, if a large-scale buy takes place.
"Capcom will continue to focus on further preserving and enhancing corporate value and common interests of its shareholders," said the company. "If there is any large-scale purchaser of Capcom stock, we will react to make necessary measures within the admissible limits of applicable laws and regulations."
In April, Capcom started development on two research and development buildings to help develop games and services internally. With next-generation consoles, the company sees a need for greater efficiency, and aims to centralize operations. By March 2022, the company plans to have 2,500 developers. Capcom will hire around 100 developers a year, mostly employing new graduates, to meet the goal.
While Capcom has had its ups and down in the video game world, the company still has a number of big releases in the future. Ultra Street Fighter IV will be available on August 8 as a full download or upgrade to Street Fighter IV Arcade. New content for Dead Rising 3 was teased at E3, along with details on Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate. A new Street Fighter game is in the early planning stages, but isn't expected until 2018. The free-to-play PlayStation 4 title Deep Down is still in development, but is expected to hit beta sometime this year.