Fenwick & West LLP represented Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: ERTS) in its recently announced $167 million investment in The9 Limited (NASDAQ: NCTY), and in a licensing agreement that gives The9 exclusive publishing rights for EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online in mainland China. The9, an online game operator in China, is primarily focused on operating and developing high-quality games for the Chinese game market, including Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft. In 2006, EA and Seoul-based Neowiz Corporation partnered to launch EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online in Korea, a game with more than 4.4 million registered subscribers. Upon completion of the investment, EA will own approximately 15% of the common shares of The9.
The Fenwick & West transaction team included corporate attorneys Mark Stevens, David Michaels, Matthew Rossiter and Christian Lymn; technology transactions attorneys Stephen Gillespie, Lance Stern and Tracy Randall; and tax attorneys Ron Schrotenboer, Bart Bassett, Timothy Fitzgibbon and Melinda Vance. Attorneys from the Beijing, China offices of TransAsia Lawyers and King & Wood assisted on the transaction.
Fenwick & West is a premier Interactive Entertainment law firm, working closely with innovative companies—from start-ups to publicly traded companies—to resolve the complex legal and business issues at the nexus of entertainment and technology. The firm was recently ranked by Legal 500 as one of the top three U.S. law firms in the interactive entertainment sector for corporate and M&A and is ranked by International Tax Review as one of only seven "First Tier" law firms in the entire U.S.