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Candy Crush Maker Sets Share Price, Heads For NYSE IPO

| 26 Mar 2014 12:58
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King's price is $22.50 per, setting the company's value at just over $7 billion.

Candy Crush maker King, more famous lately for its trademark tactics than its match-three puzzler, will start trading on the New York exchange as of March 26th, under the symbol 'KING'. Its IPO price is $22.50 per share on 22,200,000 shares, valuing the company at a little over $7 billion.

Can King deliver? King boasts 180 titles, and its Pet Rescue Saga and Farm Heroes Saga are both good earners, but candy is what makes King so valuable. A massive 78% of King's sales are attributed to one title, and the majority of its customers only know King because of Candy Crush. The candy-coated Saga has 97 million daily active users; King's next most popular titles each have fewer than 20 million daily active customers. If Candy Crush's fortunes fail, King starts looking a lot less enticing as an investment.

"We can go through a long list of one-hit wonders, everything from Angry Birds to FarmVille," says analyst Tony Wible of Janney Montgomery Scott LLC. "In this whole space, you should put a hefty risk discount into the valuations."

King says it wants to use the money raised for working capital, and also to fund what it describes as "general corporate purposes, which may include acquisitions." Estimates indicate that the IPO will create between 100 to 140 millionaires, on paper at least, a little under half of which will be King execs and staff. King CEO Riccardo Zacconi will be worth $700 million, when the IPO dust settles.

Source: Bloomberg

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