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Online games company Shanda becomes fully family-owned business

By Rashmi Kumar

Shanda Interactive Entertainment, a Chinese online games developer, will become fully owned by its founding family, following the family’s decision to purchase the shares it doesn’t already own.

Headed by chief executive and chairman Tianqiao Chen, the family currently holds 69.7% of the business. The Chens are offering $41.35 for every share they don’t already own, a 26.6% premium over its price in mid-October, said a company statement.

Following the completion of the deal, Chen, along with his wife Qian Qian Chrissy Luo and brother Danian Chen, will fully own the Shanghai-based family business. The transaction, which will value the company at $2.3 billion (€1.7 billion), will be finalised by the first quarter of 2012, according to the company.

Shanda, well known for its multi-player role-playing games that support hundreds of players at the same time, had 2010 fiscal revenues of $844.3 million, a 6% year-on-year increase. Still in its first generation of family ownership, Luo serves as non-executive director while Danian is chief operating officer.