King, creators of hugely popular Candy Crush Saga, is reportedly in consultation with J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Credit Suisse Group and Bank of America and considering a U.S. IPO later this year, according to the WSJ.
Candy Crush Saga has catapulted King into one of the top mobile game developers of all time. According to AppData, the company has almost 25 million estimated DAUs across all of its games on Facebook. Candy Crush Saga has an estimated 45 million MAUs playing the game on Facebook making it the top ranked Facebook application overall. It is also ranked number two for top free apps in the iOS app store and is number one for top grossing apps .
The harbinger of social games companies filing for IPO has to be Zynga. Since its IPO in December 2011, the company has seen a 70% decrease in its value. With recent layoffs and disappointing acquisitions leading to restructuring, the company’s stock shows no indication of quick turn around.
Last year, there were already talks of King filing for IPO in 2013. With the company announced that it was removing traditional advertising from its mobile games, King’s Candy Crush Saga has deeply resonated with its audience. Accessible through desktop and mobile, users are able to spend a significant amount of time within the game. Though the prospect of an IPO may be specific to Candy Crush’s success, King may be capable of developing games with the same amount of stickiness. If this is true, an IPO is inevitable. However, looking at Zynga and popular OMGPOP game Draw Something, social games can easily experience flash-in-the-pan success and fall into obscurity once something new comes around.