Providence Private Equity is said to be exploring alternatives for its portfolio company ZeniMax Media Inc., Bloomberg reported. Germany-based ProSiebenSat.1 Media (ETR: PSM), one of the largest independent media companies in Europe, holds a minority stake in ZeniMax through SBS Broadcasting, which it acquired in 2007.
ZeniMax is a leading developer, publisher and distributor of videogames and other interactive entertainment content for consoles, PCs, handheld and mobile/wireless devices.
The company could reportedly be valued at as much as $2.5 billion. In 2007 it was valued at $1.2 billion. Providence invested $300 million in ZeniMax convertible preferred stock in 2007, and an additional $150 million in 2010.
In March this year, Providence Equity agreed to acquire a 63% stake in pan-Baltic cable TV and broadband provider Starman Group, from East Capital Explorer AB (NASDAQ Stockholm: ECEX) in a €210 million ($232.6 million) deal expected to close in Q2 2016.
Headquartered just north of Washington, D.C., with offices in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia, ZeniMax Media is a video game publisher, managed by an experienced group of executives, which has assembled a strong creative team of world-class game developers, graphic artists and designers, sound engineers, producers and programmers to create and sell premium video game titles to a growing worldwide market.
ZeniMax creates and publishes original interactive entertainment content for consoles, the PC, and handheld/wireless devices. Its Bethesda Softworks division, founded in 1986 in the early days of the industry, has a long history of success as a publisher of award-winning video games. In addition, the ZeniMax group includes some of the most acclaimed development studios in the world. The company’s growing library of intellectual properties includes such major franchises as The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, Dishonored, DOOM, QUAKE, Wolfenstein, Enemy Territory, and RAGE. ZeniMax was co-founded in May 1999 by Bethesda Softworks founder Christopher Weaver and Washington, DC attorney Robert A. Altman, the company’s current chairman and CEO.
Providence Equity is a premier, global asset management firm with $45 billion in assets under management across complementary private equity and credit businesses. Providence pioneered a sector-focused approach to private equity investing with the vision that a dedicated team of industry experts could build exceptional companies of enduring value. Providence has invested in more than 150 companies and is the leading equity investment firm focused on the media, communications, education and information industries. Providence is headquartered in Providence, R.I. and also has offices in New York, London, Hong Kong, Singapore and New Delhi. Providence was founded in 1989 by billionaire Jonathan M. Nelson, the firm’s CEO.