The biggest buyout in video game history: Take-Two and Zynga
Today is a historic day. The announcement of Take-Two buyout of Zynga fell. For those of you who do not understand what this entails: huge sums of money and share transfers. Let’s take a look at the details of these two major players in video games and of this extraordinary deal, the most expensive to date. You will also have the opportunity to come back to the list of the most expensive buyouts in the video game.
Huge mobile game buyout priced at $ 12.7 billion
Zynga is known for such high-profile casual titles such as Farmville 3, Star Wars: Hunters, Words with Friends, CSR Racing, Mafia Wars, Draw Something and Harry Potter Puzzles and Spells to recite nobody else but them. Despite a decline since 2013, this company remains at the top of the global mobile gaming market. In general, it is Zynga that pays to acquire other studios or publishers, not the other way around. But this time we are entitled to biggest mobile game studio buyout by Take-Two.
For its part, Take-Two has forged a reputation by dint of PC and console titles. Among them, NBA 2K (owned by Visual Concepts until 2005), GTA or Borderlands appear in the best-known in-house productions. Take-Two therefore has other entities through repurchases like that of DMA Design (Rockstar North Limited) against 11 million. Take-Two signed the award for Angel Studios (Rockstar San Diego Inc.) in 2002 for 38 million US dollars and Barking Dog Studios (Rockstar Vancouver Inc.) for 3 million.
This time, Take-Two offers itself Zynga with a buyout at $ 12.7 billion split between cash and stocks. This makes it the biggest buyout deal in video games, ahead of Supercell, also a studio and publisher of mobile games.
The biggest deal from the video game giants
Take-Two is taking the lead in mobile for good reasons… money. Let’s discover together the biggest video game buyouts of recent years. If Take-Two scores the highest score with the Zynga buyout, this table still shows impressive numbers that few industry reach today, in the era following the internet bubble of 2000. Here is the ranking which lists deals over $ 1 billion, updated today on Wikipedia:
Topping the list, you won’t be surprised to see Chinese investor Tencent who recently created a Level Infinite video game label with a Don’t Starve mobile release on the horizon. Present three times in this ranking, Tencent has therefore acquired Sumo Group for 1.2 billion of dollars, Leyou for 1.5 billion and became majority shareholder of Supercell for 8.6 billion. Moreover, Tencent even planned to reinvest 11 billion in it by buying back other shares, despite the poor performance of the Finnish studio.
Also present in this top 15, Electronic Arts (this dear EA) has offered himself big chunks of the market by buying Codemasters (DiRT games), Playdemic (LEGO Star Wars Battle) and Glu Mobile (creators of Dinsey Sorcerer’s Arena, recently sold in 2021) for a total of over US $ 5 billion.
With the takeover of Zynga, Take-Two signs a uncommon deal in the video game which underlines its desire to bring its successful licenses to mobile with renowned teams.