Social media game developer Zynga has become a behemoth of the online market. With titles that include FarmVille, CityVille, Words With Friends, Hanging with Friends and even a Lady Gaga inspired GagaVille the company currently attracts more than 214 million active monthly users (AMU’s).
With those types of numbers it shouldn’t surprise anyone today to learn that the company has officially filed for an Initial Public Offering (IPO) to the tune of $2 billion.
If the company is able to attract the full value they seek, which myself and numerous other analysts believe they will it would value the company at $20 billion.
The IPO could be an important barometer for IPOs in the social media space, since going public LinkedIn has watched their stock value decline from initial highs, while Chinese social site Renren which became the first social media network to go public has lost half of their value since May.
One advantage Zynga has over other social networks is their ability to grow from outside of one network, they could just as easily adapt their games for their own social gaming platform as place them on Facebook or even offer them through Twitter should that day arrive. The company also has a rabid fan base who install new games the moment they become available, while promoting those games to all of their friends through constant social network updates and requests to join in the fun, a fact that makes the company one of the first to fully take advantage of the viral nature found in social gaming. read more
THQ has been busy at work creating Margaritaville Online a take on singer Jimmy Buffett’s popular 1977 hit song of the same name. The move allows THQ to release a social game that piggybacks on the popularity of the “Ville” name which has been popularized by social gaming company Zynga thanks to CityVille, FarmVille and even GagaVille without actually infringing on any type of copyright issues since Margaritaville has been copyrighted for years. According to the company the game will release on Facebook and iOS devices this fall and will follow a storyline familiar to Buffet fans. THQ says the game will offer: read more
Zynga, maker of the popular Facebook game FrontierVille has announced that they are now using an in-game cameo to promote Johnny Depp’s upcoming game Rango which hits theaters this coming weekend.
Starting today, players are told to find Rango. Players must ask their friends for 10 water buckets and then view a trailer of the movie, at which point they will receive a Rango statue to put on their homestead.
The promotion of movies isn’t a new gesture on the part of Zynga, they have also promoted The Green Hornet and Megamind but at least this time the movie they are promoting fits in a little better with the time period of the games theme.
Promoting products via social media games is becoming increasing more lucrative, with 19 million people actively playing FrontierVille, an estimated 9 million people took part in the Megamind promotion alone, a number equal or greater to the number of individuals who would have seen a commercial for the movie during primetime broadcast of a popular TV show. read more
Zynga has purchased company number 8 in less than one year, announcing today the acquisition of Flock a “social web browser” organization.
Flock launched in 2005 and allows users to move seamlessly between their Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn statuses via a sidebar. The social browser also features link-sharing features and a “Social Search” option where users can track their friends conversations based on various topics.
While the cost of the acquisition is not known at this time, we do know it was largely a talent buy with the Flock team joining the Zynga team moving forward.
Company CEO Shawn Hardin wrong about the acquisition on the official Flock blog: read more
Zynga, makers of Farmville, Mafia Wars and FrontierVille have proven once again why they are the world’s largest social gaming company, announcing record signups for their newest Facebook game Cityville.
Cityville, the first game from Zynga to receive a global roll out attracted more than 290,000 people in the first day of wide release, that numbers compared to their previous record of 116,000 players in one day set by FrontierVille just several short months ago.
As the name would suggest, CityVille places players in charge of building and growing their own cities. The game also marks the first time in which friends can “franchise” businesses on their friends game board, allowing for more “social” interaction among players.
The franchise option is apparently so popular that within the first 24 hours nearly 25% of all players had franchised a business on their friends game boars.
American Express and social gaming behemoth Zynga have entered into a business partnership that allows Amex customers to buy Zynga cash with their Amex Membership Rewards points.
The customers points can be used for game cards and virtual currency, while Zynga will also offer exclusive virtual goods to AMEX points customers for their products, including the very popular FarmVille social game.
The move is a smart one for Amex, allowing them to push their rewards points out for cheap to acquire virtual goods, while tapping into a customer base of 56 million social gamers in America alone.
While it’s still unseen how many AMEX customers will flock to the virtual goods, the market in 2009 reported more than $2.2 billion in virtual sales, with most of those sales coming from micro-payment company’s such as PayPal and through the use of major credit cards. read more
One of the hottest startups right now is, without a doubt, Zynga. Hot not because of all the features and its sudden rise in popularity, but ‘hot’ because the company led by CEO Mark Pincus has a real business plan and is estimated to earn more than $1million per day already.
Social gaming developer Zynga has once again hit web gold, this time with a game called FrontierVille which has been billed as Farmville meets Oregon Trail. In just two weeks FrontierVille has gathered up more than 5 million users and continues to grow. The 5 million mark is based off “active” daily users, the actual number is no doubt higher.
Zynga calls the game a spinoff to their ultra-popular Farmville and this time around the app was developed by Brian Reynolds a famous game designer most popularly known for his work on Civilization and Rise of Nations. read more
Facebook was able to keep popular Zynga games Farmville and Mafia Wars on their network with some last minute negotiations, but they weren’t able to keep their exclusivity which now includes Yahoo user support.
Yahoo has announced that they will allow access to both of the popular games featured on Facebook plus various other Zynga games which can be found directly from the Yahoo homepage.