SCi Entertainment, the LSE-traded games publisher that owns the popular Lara Croft Tomb Raider franchise, is close to finalizing a $100 million issue, and NBC Universal (NYSE: GE) could become a major shareholder in the company, reports FT, citing sources. Warner Bros Entertainment, part of Time Warner (NYSE: TWX), already owns about 10 percent stake, which it bought in 2006 for about $87.5 million, and now SCi is talking to TWX about increasing its stake by another 10 percent, the story says. If that doesn't happen, the NBCU could come in.
The company needs the money as working capital following widening losses and delays to the launch of four key games this year, including the next installment in the Tomb Raider series, the story says. It It announced in February that it is cutting its workforce by a quarter - 270 jobs - to save costs, taking its staff to around 800. Phil Rogers was appointed as the new CEO in January to replace founder Jane Cavanagh.
By Rafat Ali