Grand Theft Auto IV sold six million copies in its first week alone, netting $500 million for its publisher, Take-Two Interactive. That's even better than the wildest estimates by industry pundits, and probably will make Electronic Arts' bid to purchase Take Two a whole lot more expensive.
The significance of the sales extends beyond buoying Take-Two, a company that has had its share of legal, financial and management struggles in the last few years. The company is the subject of a $2 billion hostile takeover effort by Electronic Arts, which is offering Take Two shareholders $25.74 a share for control of the company. If Take-Two can exceed sales expectations on Grand Theft Auto IV, it has the potential to drive up the share price and force Electronic Arts to raise its offer.
Electronic Arts is going to have to club a lot of extra hookers to save up enough money to buy Take Two now.