Activision in $8.17 bln deal to buy back stake from Vivendi

July 26 Fri Jul 26, 2013 12:33am EDT

July 26 (Reuters) - Activision Blizzard Inc and a management group have entered into an $8.17 billion share buyback deal with France's Vivendi to become an independent company.

The largest U.S. video games publisher said early on Friday it would buy back 429 million shares from Vivendi for $5.83 billion.

An investor group led by CEO Bobby Kotick and Co-Chairman Brian Kelly has agreed to separately purchase about 172 million Activision shares from Vivendi for $2.34 billion.

After the completion of the deal, Vivendi will no longer be the majority shareholder, but will retain a stake of 83 million shares or about 12 percent of Activision.