Peak Games Raises $11.5M in Funding, Acquires Two Studios and Expands Into South America and Mexico

Social game developer and publisher Peak Games announced a second round of funding today from Earlybird Venture Capital to the tune of $11.5 million. The company has also acquired two developers and expanded operations into South America and Mexico.

When we last spoke with Peak Games, the company was experiencing a wave of growth on Facebook in Turkey, the Middle East, and North Africa. The secret to its success in this case was a mix of in-house developed games that met the specific needs of the regions’ audiences and publishing-localization agreements with developers like TheBroth for top-performing titles. Today, Peak Games’ Chief Strategy Officer Rina Onur tells us that the company will keep up more of the same, with support from new games, new partners, and new regional offices in the Middle East and North Africa.

“We’ve done two strategy core studio acquisitions,” Onur says, explaining how the latest round of funding is being spent. “We want to reach 100 people in our [new] Oman office. The rest is going to be talent and studio acquisitions in Turkey and the Middle East.”

The two studios acquired by Peak Games, Umaykut and Erikhan, are both based out of Turkey. Umaykut is a strategy game for the open web rooted in Turkish history while Erlikhan is a fantasy-themed strategy game for Facebook. Onur tells us that with the acquisition of these two studios, Peak Games moves beyond its current in-house portfolio of card and board games into the rapidly expanding strategy genre currently dominated by Kabam, Kixeye, and more casual strategy titles from Zynga and Digital Chocolate.

As for expanding its Facebook game offerings through partnerships, Peak Games and RockYou recently announced an agreement to publish Zoo World 2 in Turkey, the Middle East and North Africa. Onur says that Peak Game users have been wanting a game similar in theme to Zoo World franchise for a long time, which contributed to the recent success of المزرعة السعيدة, an Arabic-language farming sim developed by Halfquest and published by Peak Games.

The key, explains Onur, is localizing the game for the region in the most natural way possible. “Peak Games has been so successful in this region because international companies have been pushing games in English or in poorly localized versions in Arabic and Turkish,” she says. “Our focus is these emerging markets, so our [games] are highly polished. I think that’s one of the secret sauces to our success. We have aspirations of developing Arabic-specific games for the region as well.”

Over the past six months, we’ve seen companies concentrate on hyper-localized versions of social games for both emerging and established markets. A major barrier these companies face is establishing regional branches in countries that have vastly different business cultures from their own. As an example, it took PopCap Games years to build its offices in Asia and still more time on top of that for the studio to begin producing PopCap content for its market. The content that studio produces is so vastly different from what the Western audience expects that PopCap doesn’t bother to localize its Asian-developed titles for North America or Europe.

On Facebook, Peak Games current enjoys a cumulative 16 million monthly active users and 3.7 million daily active users across all its published and developed games (including figures from the recently-acquired Erlikhan). Its largest game by traffic in MAU is the in-house developed Okey while DAU is dominated by Komşu Çiftlik, which Peak Games publishes in the region on behalf of TheBroth. You can follow the developer-publisher’s progress on AppData, our traffic tracking service for social games and developers.