News & Information for Technology Purchasers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
Home Enterprise I.T. Cloud Computing Applications Hardware More Topics...
You are here: Home / After Hours / SoftBank Buys $1.5B into Mobile Gaming
DDoS Protection Powered By Verisign
SoftBank Buys Into Mobile Gaming Company for $1.5B
SoftBank Buys Into Mobile Gaming Company for $1.5B
By Jennifer LeClaire / NewsFactor Network Like this on Facebook Tweet this Link thison Linkedin Link this on Google Plus
PUBLISHED:
OCTOBER
15
2013


Japanese telecommunications giant SoftBank made U.S. headlines when it bought most of Sprint for $21.6 billion earlier this year, but the company isn’t out of cash yet. Now it has partnered with its subsidiary GungHo Online Entertainment to buy 51 percent of a Finnish mobile game maker called Supercell Oy for $1.53 billion.

Supercell will continue to operate independently while leveraging SoftBank's strategic resources, and will also officially become a subsidiary. The mobile gaming company is best known for popular apps like Clash of Clans and Hay Day, which have reached top grossing status in Apple’s App Store in 137 and 96 countries respectively.

“From February 2013 to August 2013, Supercell was the number one publisher in the world among the apps in the games category of the App Store,” Softbank said in a statement. “This new strategic partnership with SoftBank and GungHo will help accelerate Supercell's goal of becoming the ‘first truly global games company.’”

The Smell of Opportunity

Of course, SoftBank has a clear agenda here. With GungHo and Supercell as drivers in content services, the company is moving closer to its goal of becoming the number one mobile Internet company. It looks like one hand is truly washing the other in this mega-deal. Here is some of Softbank’s reasoning for choosing Supercell over another mobile gaming company:

“In our quest to become the number one mobile Internet company, we scour the globe in search of interesting opportunities and right now some of the most exciting companies and innovations are coming out of Finland,” said SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son. “Supercell is one of those rare and special companies.”

For his part, Ilkka Paananen, Supercell’s founder and CEO, said the “combination of tablets, mobile and the free-to-play business model has created a new market for games -- one that will be accessible to billions of consumers…” The bottom line here: all three companies smell opportunity.

Overcoming a Mobile Challenge

We caught up with Billy Pidgeon, an independent video games analyst, to get his thoughts on the blockbuster gaming acquisition. He told us the investment should help Supercell penetrate more Asian markets. But he’s surprised that the company didn’t seek a Chinese investor that could help it drive into China, where much of the gaming growth is occurring.

“There is still money to be made in Japan and Korea, even though they are mature markets,” Pidgeon said. “Everybody has a phone and they are moving from feature phones to smartphones rapidly and that may help as well because Supercell’s strength is in smartphones.”

Pidgeon said this wasn’t just an empty investment. Supercell’s margins are high and the company has some outrageously successful games. SoftBank could have gone after companies with great tech or great teams but that may not have yielded short-term impact. He concluded, “Supercell is making money in the free-to-play market, which is a challenge.”

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:

Like Us on FacebookFollow Us on Twitter
TOP STORIES NOW
MAY BE OF INTEREST
Salesforce.com is the market and technology leader in Software-as-a-Service. Its award-winning CRM solution helps 82,400 customers worldwide manage and share business information over the Internet. Experience CRM success. Click here for a FREE 30-day trial.
MORE IN AFTER HOURS
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Who Is the Hacker Group Lizard Squad?
Are they dangerous or just obnoxious? That’s what many are wondering about the hacker group Lizard Squad, which tweeted out a bomb threat that grounded a flight with a Sony exec aboard.
 
Are Government Spies Tipping Off Tor?
Less than a month ago, tech news headlines heralded a Tor Project breach. Now, some are saying that government spies are sharing information with Tor to help it prevent future breaches.
 
Backoff Malware Hits 1,000+ Businesses, Likely More
More than 1,000 businesses across the U.S. might have been affected by Backoff, a new kind of point-of-sale (PoS) malware, according to the Department of Homeland Security.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Apple Set To Release Largest iPad Ever
Tech giant Apple seems to have adopted the mantra “go big or go home.” The company is planning to introduce its largest iPad ever: a 12.9-inch behemoth that will dwarf its largest existing models.
 
Alert: HP Recalls 5 Million Notebook AC Power Cords
HP is recalling about 5.6 million notebook computer AC power cords in the U.S. and another 446,700 in Canada because of possible overheating, which can pose a fire and burn hazard.
 
Acer's New Desktop Box Rides the Chrome OS Wave
Filling out its Chrome OS line, Acer is following the introduction of a larger Chromebook line earlier this month with a new tiny $180 desktop Chromebox and also a smaller Chromebook.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Apple Set To Release Largest iPad Ever
Tech giant Apple seems to have adopted the mantra “go big or go home.” The company is planning to introduce its largest iPad ever: a 12.9-inch behemoth that will dwarf its largest existing models.
 
Verizon Hops on the Voice-Over-LTE Bandwagon
Wireless provider Verizon is gearing up for a nationwide launch of its Voice-over-LTE service over the next several weeks, promising clearer and crisper phone calls and a Skype-like video service.
 
Smartphone 'Kill Switch' Law in California; Will Other States Follow?
California’s new law -- signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday -- aimed at deterring cellphone theft could mean most mobile phones sold in the U.S. will soon include similar “kill-switch” tech.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Network
Home/Top News | Enterprise I.T. | Cloud Computing | Applications | Hardware | Mobile Tech | Big Data | Communications
World Wide Web | Network Security | Data Storage | CRM Systems | Microsoft/Windows | Apple/Mac | Linux/Open Source | Personal Tech
Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.