British mobile developer King has been in and out of the news a lot recently. First it announced vast 2013 profits, then it trademarked the word Candy and began chasing The Banner Saga over its use of the word “Saga” in spite of the fact King did not, at the time, have a trademark for that word.
Now, it’s readying itself for its New York IPO (Initial Public Offering) and is making history as the most valuable British company to join stock markets after its initial value was given as $7.6 billion...
This makes King around four times more valuable than Grand Theft Auto publishers Take Two Interactive, and only just short of EA’s estimated 9 billion dollar value. King was valued at around $5.5 billion just one month ago, but buoyant stock markets mean the valuation has shot up by almost $2 billion in a month.
Bearing in mind King announced annual profits of $1.88 billion at the end of 2013, the figure is not overly suprising, particularly considering those profits exploded from the comparatively modest $164 million in 2012. If profits continue to rise, we can only imagine the kind of money King will be making in 2014, although the case of fellow mobile moguls Zynga should serve as a warning to anyone expecting continuous exponential growth for the firm.
In addition to the fall of Zynga potential investors may be concerned by the fact that around 95% of King’s income comes from just three of its many titles: Candy Crush, Pet Rescue Saga and Farm Heroes Saga. However, recent data suggests that in February King games were notching up around 1.4 billion plays a day, so it seems King’s star may remain on the rise for some time.
Kings shares will be priced between $21 and $24 each. It is not currently known when King will come to market, but according to leaks, it is expected to be around 25th March.