King.com, which is the maker of the popular game Candy Crush Saga, decided to go public with its initial price offering at $22.50 per share under the ticker KING. These shares are expected to start trading at the New York Stock Exchange with a $7 billion valuation for the company.
At its current share price, King.com can be able to generate $350 million for the company and an additional $150 million for early investors. This includes private equity company Apax Partners LLP. At the IPO, the company was able to sell 22.2 million shares, with underwriters having the option to sell an additional 3.3 million.
Candy Crush Saga has gained popularity among smartphone and tablet users in the past year, attracting 97 million players daily. With that, King.com was able to garner more than $500 million in profits with $1.9 billion in total revenue. Candy Crush Saga was 2012’s top grossing app on the Apple Store but many are cynical that the game can carry on with its success.
Candy Crush Saga Developer Prospects
Bear in mind that previous social gaming apps such as Angry Birds and Farmville have seen a massive decline in numbers, as newer games popped up. Zynga Inc. (ZNGA) has chalked up a slide in share prices a year after its IPO. As of this writing ZNGA shares are trading at 52% below its December 2011 IPO price, although it did enjoy some bids from hedge funds like Millennium Management LLC and Tiger Global Management LLC.
Compared to its peers though, KING is seeking a more conservative valuation but is promising continued success with Candy Crush and future gaming apps. Analysts estimate that KING’s prices could triple or even trade at 5.5 times its IPO price in the near term. Portfolio managers have noted that King.com has plenty of other projects in the pipeline and isn’t simply relying on the success of Candy Crush.
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