After a decade in business, casual game maker King Digital Entertainment saw its revenue soar to nearly $1.9 billion in 2013, with profits of almost $568 million, as its hit game Candy Crush Saga transformed the company (and its financial statements).
Those are among the details revealed in the company’s IPO registration filing, made public this morning.
King’s IPO, seeking to raise $500 million, will be closely watched by members of the tight-knit casual games community, including Seattle-based game makers such as Big Fish and RealNetworks’ GameHouse division. King has been a mainstay of that community since long before its Candy Crush hit, with a longtime presence at the Casual Connect conference, held for many years in Seattle.
King’s chief financial officer is Hope Cochran, the former Clearwire chief financial officer, who joined the game maker in September, when word of its IPO filing first leaked out.
The big question is whether King can maintain the momentum created by the game, and that’s also the big risk for investors as they consider the company’s future.
King is headquartered in Ireland, with operations in cities including San Francisco. The company saw its employee headcount skyrocket from 144 in 2011 to 665 in 2013.
Other notable tidbits from the IPO registration include the obligatory list of competitors. Here are the companies named by King: Activision Blizzard, Inc.; DeNA Co., Ltd.; Electronic Arts Inc.; Gree International, Inc.; GungHo Online Entertainment America, Inc.; Microsoft Corporation; Nexon Co. Ltd.; NHN Entertainment Corp.; Supercell Oy; Tencent Holdings Limited; and Zynga Inc.
And in case there’s any doubt what’s driving this trend, there’s this stat from the filing: “In the year ended December 31, 2013, 70% of our gross bookings were generated by mobile users, an increase from 10% in the year ended December 31, 2012.”
Updated at 8:50 a.m. with details on King’s CFO. Thanks to Nakesh for pointing this out.