Fri, May 18, 2012 - Page 12 News List

FTC to investigate Nexon’s purchase of Gamania shares

Staff Writer, with CNA

The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) yesterday said it would interview representatives of South Korean online gaming giant Nexon Co next week in the wake of the company’s alleged hostile takeover bid for Taiwanese gaming firm Gamania Digital Entertainment Co (遊戲橘子).

The commission will ask Nexon to comment on its definition of Gamania’s market share, the particular field it defines Gamania as being in, and its current relations with Gamania — vital information in discerning whether Nexon has violated the Fair Trade Act (公平交易法), Fair Trade Commission Chairman Wu Shiow-ming (吳秀明) said at a legislative meeting.

The Fair Trade Act stipulates that any planned merger involving a company with more than a 25 percent market share in a particular field must be reported to the authorities.

Local media has reported that Nexon held more than 33 percent of Gamania’s shares as of the end of March, at least 10 percent more than Gamania chairman and CEO Albert Li’s (劉柏園) holdings.

Wu said the commission would “not just take Nexon’s word for it,” and stressed that it will follow judicial procedures to review the case.

On Monday, Nexon said in a statement that it believed Gamania’s market share was less than 25 percent of the overall Taiwanese digital content industry, which includes online games and other forms of digital entertainment.

In acquiring the shares, Nexon said it has made timely reports to Gamania and the government securities agency in Taiwan.

The government is currently checking the veracity of those claims.

Gamania issued a statement yesterday, saying it insisted on remaining independent and objecting to any merger with Nexon.

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