Lionsgate shares jump after report toymaker Hasbro nearly acquired it last year

  • Lionsgate's stock pops in Tuesday midday trading after a report reveals that Hasbro nearly acquired the entertainment company in 2017.
  • The toy builder was looking to buy the company for at least $40 per share.
Michael Burns
Michael Newberg | CNBC
Michael Burns

Shares of Lionsgate popped 4 percent in Tuesday midday trading after a Variety report revealed that toy builder Hasbro was close to acquiring the entertainment company in 2017.

Hasbro looked to buy the company for at least $40 per share but Lionsgate's board chairman Mark Rachesky thought the bid was too low and ended the deal, the report said, citing sources familiar with the situation.

Lionsgate vice chairman Michael Burns told CNBC last month the company is talking to multiple bidders for a merger, saying Lionsgate "would talk to anybody at any time."

"We are now a $7 billion market cap company. We're a pint-sized bite for some of these giant market cap companies. Our job is to create shareholder value, enhance shareholder value," Burns said.

Burns did not reveal his top choice for a bid but pointed to Amazon as a deal that would make sense.

"We're doing a lot of business with them," Burns said of the tech giant, adding that Lionsgate thinks "there's more and more" that can be done.

Lionsgate stock has been treading water over the past year, rising only 4 percent in 12 months, according to FactSet.