Zynga buys startup behind hit "Draw Something" game

Mar 21, 2012
Social games star Zynga on Wednesday said it has bought the young company behind a playful "Draw Something" application that rocketed in popularity in recent weeks.

Social games star Zynga on Wednesday said it has bought the young company behind a playful "Draw Something" application that rocketed in popularity in recent weeks.

Zynga did not disclose how much it paid for New York City-based OMGPOP but unofficial estimates valued the deal at approximately $200 million.

"We want people to play our games and feel a fun and valuable social connection to their friends and family," said Zynga chief mobile officer David Ko.

"We think 'Draw Something' is one of the most social, most expressive mobile games ever built with its unique social competition and unmatched player generated content."

OMGPOP and its 40-person team will become Zynga's New York office and be led by the six-year-old startup's chief executive Dan Porter.

"With Zynga it is about creativity, but it is also about the most brilliant engineers that can scale games," Porter said in a conference call with reporters.

"We brought 'Draw Something' this far, but now to do things like put it in 20 languages amplifies the situation."

OMGPOP's drawing game for smartphones or tablet computers became a rage in recent weeks, unseating Zynga titles 'Words with Friends' and 'Cityville' from longtime thrones at the top of charts for mobile "apps."

Industry tracker AppData reported that 13.3 million people a day used "Draw Something," a game in which players take turns sketching images on smartphone or tablet screens and then guessing what the drawings represent.

There is an ad-supported free version of the game, and an ad-free app that sells for $1.99.

"A little over six weeks ago we released 'Draw Something' and it has been an incredible and wild ride ever since," Porter said.

The game "app" has been downloaded more than 35 million times and players draw a total of a billion pictures each week, according to Porter.

"Draw Something" is the most popular word game mobile application in 84 countries, according figures from Apple's online App Store.

"Zynga really got what made this game special," Porter said. "This has the potential to be a great partnership."

Zynga stock price rose more than two percent to $13.72 after the acquisition was announced.

Explore further: Ticketfly buying WillCall for on-premise data

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Zynga buys rising mobile game star Newtoy

Dec 02, 2010

Zynga, king of online social networking games, is following its fans onto smartphones and other mobile devices with the acquisition Thursday of rising social play star Newtoy.

Zynga mulls online gambling market

Jan 20, 2012

(AP) -- Zynga, the social game company known for "FarmVille" and "Zynga Poker," is mulling a new market - online gambling.

Recommended for you

Ticketfly buying WillCall for on-premise data

Aug 21, 2014

Ticketfly Inc., a San Francisco-based technology company among several posing a challenge to Ticketmaster, is acquiring WillCall Inc., a crosstown rival that turns your smartphone into a mobile wallet at live events.

HP revenue inches up after years of decline

Aug 20, 2014

Hewlett-Packard on Wednesday reported that its quarterly revenue rose for the first time in three years, nudged by improved computer sales everywhere except Russia and China.

Restaurants experimenting with pay-in-advance tickets

Aug 20, 2014

With restaurant patrons increasingly jumping on the Internet to make reservations, some high-end eateries here and across the country are adding a new tech wrinkle: having their clientele pay for their meal in advance using ...

Chip maker Infineon to buy California firm for $3B (Update)

Aug 20, 2014

German chip maker Infineon Technologies AG says it has agreed to pay $3 billion in cash for California-based semiconductor firm International Rectifier, which produces power-management components used in everything from cars ...

User comments : 0