THQ shares rocket as acquisition rumours intensify

Warner in THQ takeover talks?

Media empire Warner is the subject of mounting speculation that it is preparing to launch a takeover bid for rival publisher THQ.

Shares in THQ soared 13 per cent on Tuesday amid rumours that the publisher – which holds the lucrative WWE game license – is the target of a takeover offer.

Warner has been aggressively increasing its presence in the global game sector, having recently acquired Midway for $49 million.

Late in 2007, Warner expanded its game business by snapping up Travellers’ Tales.

"We do think that both Time Warner and Viacom are interested in the gaming space," said ThinkEquity analyst Atul Bagga, quoted in a Wall Street Journal report.

Take-Two shares closed at $11.72 on Tuesday, nearly double the publisher’s share price seven days prior.

Some analysts were surprised at the sudden surge in takeover speculation.

MKM Partners analyst Eric Handler remarked that THQ takeover is unlikely in the short term, citing that the company is still at the early stages of rebuilding its IP portfolio.

Develop has contacted the parties involved for comment.

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