By Al Giovetti


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Electronic Arts Completes Acquisition of Westwood Studios; Creators of "Command & Conquer" Become EA's 10th Game Studio

On Sept. 8, 1998, Electronic Arts(TM)(NASDAQ:ERTS), the world's largest interactive entertainment software company, today announced it has completed its previously announced acquisition of Westwood Studios Inc., and the Irvine, Calif.-based Virgin Studio from Virgin Interactive Entertainment Inc., a division of Spelling Entertainment Group Inc. (NYSE:SP). The cash transaction is valued at $122.5 million.

Westwood, based in Las Vegas, becomes Electronic Arts' (EA) 10th entertainment studio and a wholly owned subsidiary of San Mateo-based EA. Founded in 1985 by Brett Sperry and Louis Castle, Westwood is known for the best-selling franchise "Command & Conquer"(R), which has been one of the most successful PC games ever, and the critically acclaimed "Lands of Lore"(TM) and "Dune"(TM) series.

Both Sperry and Castle have signed five-year employment contracts and will remain with Westwood.

Larry Probst, Electronic Arts' chairman and CEO, said, "Westwood is one of our industry's finest entertainment software studios. Its top-selling "Command & Conquer" and "Lands of Lore" series set new standards for innovation and creativity and are two of the industry's most valuable franchises.

"Adding Westwood to our EA SPORTS, Maxis, ORIGIN, Jane's Combat Simulations and Bullfrog brands positions Electronic Arts to reach our goal to be the No. 1 publisher of entertainment software on the personal computer."

EA President of Worldwide Studios Don Mattrick said, "We are pleased that Westwood co-founders Brett Sperry and Louis Castle will remain with the company and will continue to play key leadership roles in producing imaginative original titles and in managing the tremendous creative team at the Westwood and Irvine Studios. The outstanding creative talent and rich pool of intellectual properties are great additions our studio family."

Westwood Studios was previously a division of Virgin Interactive Entertainment, which is a division of Spelling Entertainment Group Inc. Viacom Inc. (AMEX:VIA/VIAB) owns approximately 80 percent of Spelling Entertainment. Westwood is a prominent publisher of best-selling PC and next-generation console games.

The company has released several popular titles including: the "Lands of Lore" series, the "Kyrandia"(R) adventure trilogy, "Monopoly"(R) for the Internet, "Blade Runner"(TM), "Games People Play"(TM), and the "Command & Conquer" product line. More information on Westwood and its entire software line is available on the Internet at http://www.westwood.com.

Electronic Arts, headquartered in San Mateo, is the world's leading interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, Electronic Arts posted revenues of $909 million for fiscal 1998. The company develops, publishes and distributes software worldwide for personal computers and advanced entertainment systems such as the PlayStation(R) and Nintendo(R) 64.

Electronic Arts markets its products under six brand names: Electronic Arts, EA SPORTS(TM), Maxis(TM), Origin Systems(TM) Inc., Bullfrog(TM) Productions Ltd. and Jane's(R) Combat Simulations. EA has international subsidiaries and distribution in more than 75 countries worldwide.

The company has 10 major development operations in nine locations throughout the world that are based in San Mateo and Walnut Creek, Calif.; Baltimore; Austin, Texas; Maitland, Fla.; Seattle; Las Vegas; Vancouver, British Columbia; the United Kingdom and Japan. More information about EA's products and full text of press releases can be found on the Internet at http://www.ea.com.

Note to Editors: Electronic Arts, EA SPORTS, Maxis, Origin Systems and Bullfrog are trademarks or registered trademarks of Electronic Arts or its wholly owned subsidiaries in the United States and/or other countries. Jane's is a registered trademark of Jane's Information Group Ltd. Westwood, Command & Conquer, Lands of Lore and Kyrandia are trademarks or registered trademarks of Westwood Studios. PlayStation is a registered trademark of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Nintendo 64 is a registered trademark of Nintendo of America Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.












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