Zynga Ito buy mobile game developer NaturalMotion for $527 mn

San Francisco-headquartered online games developer Zynga Inc, yesterday said that it will buy mobile game developer NaturalMotion for $527 million, its largest acquisition to date.

Zynga Ito buy mobile game developer NaturalMotion for $527 mn''NaturalMotion expands Zynga's creative pipeline, accelerates our mobile growth, and brings next-generation technology and tools to Zynga that will fast-track our ability to deliver consumers more hit games. Bringing Zynga and NaturalMotion together is a bold step in the right direction at the right time,'' said, Don Mattrick, CEO of Zynga.

The San Francisco-based company will pay $391 million in cash and about 39.8 million of its stock, taking the total deal value to $527 million.

Around 11.6 million of the 39.8 million shares will go to NaturalMotion employees who are joining Zynga.

Oxford, the UK-based NaturalMotion is one of the fastest-growing social mobile publishers on iOS and Android, and has created big blockbuster titles like Clumsy Ninja, Jenga, My Horse, CSR Classics and others.

Its CSR Racing game that runs on iOS and Android, is currently among the top 100 highest-grossing mobile apps and its first six games reached the top 10 of the Apple App Store globally.

NaturalMotion made its mobile social gaming debut with its chart-topping game, My Horse, using a disruptive strategy, pairing console production values with mobile usage patterns. It creates the majority of its mobile games using its proprietary simulation technology, first debuted in Rockstar Games' Grand Theft Auto IV.

With popular games like FarmVille, Zynga, which raised $1 billion in an initial public offering in December 2011, is one of the world's leading provider of social game services with more than 240 million monthly active users.

Its portfolio of games that include CityVille, FarmVille, Words With Friends, Scramble With Friends, CastleVille, Hidden Chronicles, Zynga Poker, Empires & Allies, Indiana Jones Adventure World, The Pioneer Trail, Mafia Wars and Café World.

Three of the top five Facebook games in 2013 were in terms of monthly active users,  were Zynga titles - FarmVille 2,  Zynga Poker, and ChefVille.

According to a BBC report, 80 per cent of Zynga's revenue comes from Facebook users,  but its relationship with Facebook ended 31 March

2013, and  Zynga's games are now available on a number of global platforms, including Facebook, Google+, Tencent, Apple iOS and Google Android.

(See: Letter from  NaturalMotion CEO and co-founder Torsten Reil informing employees of the acquisition by Zynga)