Lionsgate offered no comment on the U.S. toy maker not coming to agreement over a price tag for the Hollywood studio.
Hasbro has ended informal takeover talks with Lionsgate, Reuters reported Wednesday, citing unnamed sources close to the negotiations.
A Lionsgate spokesperson declined comment on the report the U.S. toy maker had been looking to acquire the Hollywood studio, but negotiations apparently ended over an acquisition price.
Hasbro and Lionsgate earlier collaborated on the animated feature My Little Pony: The Movie, which starred Emily Blunt. The project was produced by Hasbro's Allspark Pictures, with Lionsgate distributing and marketing the film globally, with the exception of China.
It's unclear whether the recent talks included a formal proposal to acquire Lionsgate, or whether negotiations could be revived in the future.
Hasbro could not be reached to respond to a request for comment. The toy maker, best known for animated series like My Little Pony and Transformers, last year expanded its animation portfolio by acquiring Boulder Media.
Hasbro Ends Acquisition Negotiations With Lionsgate: Report
Hasbro’s been toying with the idea of buying a studio for years, going back at least to 2014 when its acquisition talks with DreamWorks Animation fell apart.
But the plaything maker broke off conversations with Lionsgate last week over “price disagreements,” Reuters says citing “people familiar with the matter.”
Hasbro shares are down 2.2% following the report. Lionsgate is up less than 1%. A studio rep declined to comment.
Lionsgate has a market value of $2.4 billion while Hasbro is at nearly $13 billion.
It would be surprising to see Lionsgate sell: It recently bought Starz. And one of its major investors — Liberty Media’s John Malone — seems to like having the studio in the constellation of assets he influences, which also include Discovery Communications, Charter Communications, Liberty Global, Sirius XM, and Live Nation.
Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner told analysts last month that “entertainment continues to drive our business” as it makes toys for franchises including Transformers, Disney titles including Star Wars and The Avengers, and My Little Pony.
It also has ambitious production plans. This week Hasbro Studios unveiled a deal to produce an original series, Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters, for Netflix.
Hasbro’s Allspark Pictures produces feature films including Jem And The Holograms, Ouija, and G.I. Joe: Retaliation.
The toy company’s Q2 earnings disappointed investors, in part due to lower than expected sales of toys tied to Hollywood productions.
Hasbro said it discounted products to clear the shelves ahead of the release of new Star Wars merchandise at Disney’s Force Friday 2 rollout on September 1, plus the October release of My Little Pony: The Movie, and November’s Olaf’s Frozen Adventure from the Frozen franchise.