The new, still young year is already a year of major acquisitions. This time, Take Two struck. The game publisher is acquiring Zynga for 12.7 billion US dollars (~ 11.2 billion euros) . This is not at home in the traditional gaming area, but operates browser games.
Zynga is therefore not so much on gaming computers and consoles as it is on office PCs: The company is responsible for titles such as FarmVille and other titles in the same format, which are found on Facebook, among others. The target group are people who otherwise would not come into contact with video games.
Zynga makes money with microtransactions , which have been a cash cow in the industry for years. Of the total revenue of 705 million US dollars in the third quarter of 2021, more than three quarters of the additional purchases, reveals the last quarterly report (PDF) , the rest is earned through advertising. The fact that the balance sheets show a quarterly loss of 42 million US dollars was not decisive for the takeover.
Take Two sees many advantages
According to its own statements, Take Two wants to become the heavyweight in the mobile gaming segment and one of the largest entertainment groups in the world. In addition, the group sees potential savings of 100 million US dollars within two years through synergies.
Structural advantages result from the fact that 50 percent of sales in the area of digital transactions are now in the lucrative mobile segment and the proportion of users who regularly make additional purchases (“recurrent consumer spending”) is increasing. They generate a constant, safe and predictable influx of sales. In this area, the combined expertise can also be used profitably to develop more effective microtransation systems.
GTA and Co. on the smartphone
New games for the mobile segment based on Take-Two brands are also on the agenda after the takeover. The publisher would like to attract the “committed and loyal” player communities around his titles, especially GTA (Online) and Red Dead Redemption 2, to the smartphone. The newly acquired specialists at Zynga should accelerate this expansion. However, it is going in a new direction. Last year the group wanted to expand its range of classic games by buying Codemasters, but was outbid by EA .
Take Two now pays a record sum for Zynga and 64 percent more per share than was last listed on the Zynga stock exchange. In comparison: In 2015, Activision’s Candy Crush developer King was worth 5.9 billion US dollars , Zenimax, the parent company of Bethesda, cost Microsoft “only” 7.5 billion US dollars last year.