* Game simulates cut and thrust of takeover battle
* Idea is to provide some escapist fun, CEO says
* European M&A sector in decline, but could see rebound
By Julia Fioretti
LONDON, Jan 16 A new app that its creators say
allows players to simulate a major merger or acquisition deal,
complete with all the drama and backstabbing but with none of
the actual financial downside, became available on Thursday for
iPhones and iPads.
"M&A Game" is said by its developer, the international data
firm ansarada, to be the world's first mergers-and-acquisitions
(M&A) game app. It aims to create all the thrills and cutthroat
competition of a real takeover bid.
"M&A is usually a long and intensive process involving
months of detailed work by everyone working on deals," Sam
Riley, CEO of ansarada, said in a news release.
"We decided to design and build a game to provide some
escapist fun for the whole M&A community, anywhere in the
Players can buy, sell and merge corporations across nine
major industrial sectors with a team of investment bankers,
accountants and lawyers. Deal-making tactics range all the way
from flattery to haggling and bullying.
"We created it to be a fun escape, but also very competitive
because people involved in M&A are pretty competitive by their
nature," a spokesperson for ansarada said.
Players are asked to select from a range of qualities and
attributes they think make a good M&A deal maker, including
drive, charisma, strength, and even deception. The catch? You
can't have all the qualities, so a savvy CEO will know which to
Does the app herald a rebound for the largely dormant M&A
European M&A was down nearly a quarter on last year to $511
billion but, with firms sitting on piles of excess cash,
investors are now pushing them to snap up rivals.
"The corporate cut and thrust is certainly very much front
and centre in the business world now," the spokesperson said.
"It's very much back on the agenda."
(Reporting By Julia Fioretti; Editing by Michael Roddy and