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Bonnell received $4.75 million to exit Atari

According to financial report, Infogrames agreed to pay former CEO to resign without board's input

According to Atari Inc's annual 10-K report filed with the SEC yesterday, former CEO Bruno Bonnell received EUR 3 million (USD 4.75 million) to resign his duties as director and CEO of Infogrames Entertainment SA.

The agreement - reached on April 4 of 2007 - was apparently done without the knowledge of Atari Inc, which stated that neither its board of directors nor any member of its management was consulted about the deal. The company did not receive a copy until two months after it was signed.

Infogrames - Atari Inc's majority shareholder - removed five of the company's seven directors in October 2007. It re-acquired Atari for USD 11 million through an offer it made in March of 2008.

The annual report confirmed that the company had sold its studios by the end of fiscal 2007 and has stopped developing games - even through third-party developers. Infogrames licensed the development and distribution rights for the Test Drive franchise for seven years, allowing Atari to distribute any versions of those games in North America.

Atari Inc reported that it has a significant library of well-known properties licensed from Infogrames including Dragon Ball Z, Alone in the Dark, Asteroids, Pong, Missile Command, Centipede, Dungeons and Dragons, Earthworm Jim, RollerCoaster Tycoon and Godzilla.

The Dragon Ball Z franchise in particular generated 45.7 per cent of the company's publishing net revenues in fiscal 2007 and 49.1 per cent of its publishing net revenues in fiscal 2008.

The company also maintains North American distribution operations and systems that reach in excess of approximately 30,000 retail outlets throughout the US.

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