THQ has received approval from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court on the calendar to conduct bidding and complete the sale of the company following an agreement reached between the potential buyer and the committee representing unsecured creditors. The Court approved Clearlake Capital Group, L.P.’s bid for the entire company as the opening bid for an orderly auction process. The Court also approved procedures that allow other interested parties to bid for individual assets or for the entire company, but bids for individual assets will only be considered superior to an aggregate bid for the entire company if the value generated by separate sales were to exceed the price offered by an individual bidder for the entire company. Did that make your head hurt or is it just me? In any case, it seems that the folks who wanted the company assets sold off in individual pieces got at least a portion of what they wanted.
The new calendar now calls for all bids to be received by January 22, 2013 at 9:00 a.m. ET. The auction will be held later that day at 3:00 p.m. The hearing on the sale will be held at 9:30 a.m. January 23, and the closing will occur January 24.
In any case we now have a clear timeline for how this will all go down and we will know by January 24th how everything has shaken out. In terms of due diligence, that only leaves 16 days for companies to decide if they want to take a run at any of the assets. Honestly, I still think that either Ubisoft or EA buys the entire company because the material loss of any one of the single assets could make buying the company pointless. If you pull out the Saints Row IP in particular, everything else becomes significantly less valuable. It’s a tough spot, if the Saints Row IP was to sell seperately, then the rest of the assets become a lot less valuable but none of the bidders would be willing to let anyone just sneak off with the most valuable IP and then pick up what is left for a minimum $60 million. For that reason, I see companies going all in for bids on the entire company and taking all the IP in one move. But that’s just my opinion, I guess we will know in 16 days how this all works out.