The importance of social networking and gaming was again underlined this week when online gambling operator and software provider 888.com announced the acquisition of the assets comprising the Mytopia social games development studio from Real Dice Inc.
The consideration payable for the assets consists of a base price and additional earn-out adjustments.
The base price of $18 million will be paid as follows: $12 million cash payment upon completion and an additional $6 million payable in cash upon meeting certain milestones connected to the mobile and social networking games prior to 31 December 2011.
An additional earn out payment in cash will be made calculated on the basis of net profit for the calendar year 2011. The total maximum consideration payable by 888 to the vendor is capped at $48 million.
The assets acquired comprise:
* A games development studio, specialising in developing cross-platform social games for
smartphones, mobile handsets and social networking platforms including Facebook
* Numerous games, including “Bingo Island 2” (one of the top Bingo applications on
Facebook) and a social poker application using the “Pacific Poker” brand
* A real-time multiplayer mobile poker application available for iPhone, Android,
BlackBerry, Windows Mobile and J2ME handsets which has been installed by more than
1,000,000 users globally
* A technology platform for hosting and operating real-time social games on social
networks and mobile
* A software licence for Particle Code, a cross-platform application development
framework for mobile devices and tablets
A spokesman for 888.com said the assets will form the cornerstone of 888’s social gaming and mobile strategy, offering a player experience across different platforms. Social network and smartphone gaming applications will also be offered to Dragonfish B2B partners, allowing them to take advantage of this fast-growing area.
During the year ended 31 December 2009 the assets subject of the acquisition generated an unaudited pro-forma loss of $100 000 before tax. The target assets have no significant book value.
Gigi Levy, CEO of 888 Holdings, said: “This is a very exciting deal for 888, and builds on our aim of providing a variety of entertainment destinations where people can enjoy a truly interactive experience on a multitude of platforms.
"Mytopia is one of the leading publishers of cross-platform social-games and this acquisition gives us an immediate footprint in the fast-growing social gaming arena, complementing our core offering and giving us access to millions of customers.
"Improvements in mobile technology now mean more people are comfortable using applications on the move, and we expect significant growth in this area. The acquisition extends 888’s reach and market share in the fast growing social networks and smart mobile devices, such as iPhone and Android powered handsets, and leaves us well positioned to take advantage of this growth.”
Guy Ben-Artzi, CEO of Real Dice, said: “888 understands where the market is going. Mytopia will thrive with 888’s infrastructure and expertise behind it and bring to 888 new revenue streams from virtual goods and microtransactions on social networks and mobile devices.
“We both believe that an advanced social gaming creative and operational capability, along with technology to move faster in critical smartphone and emerging platforms like iPad, is the best way to connect with the next-generation of players.”
Real Dice was founded to develop multiplayer games for social networks and next-generation mobile devices like PalmOS, Windows Mobile, BlackBerry and Symbian platforms. Its focus is on creating rich, immersive games that enable users to play together across multiple platforms in real-time.
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