Candy Crush Maker Wants a Sweet IPO



The European game company responsible for the hugely popular Candy Crush Saga has filed for an IPO, according to its F-1 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission seen on Tuesday. King Digital Entertainment PLC has filed for an IPO of $500 million on the New York Stock Exchange, where it would like to trade under the ticker “KING.” Credit Suisse, JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM), and Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) are listed as underwriters.

Candy Crush has proven to be the most popular of all free-to-play mobile games, which are replacing consumers’ appetites for more expensive, traditional video games played on a television via a gaming console. Mobile games cost little to nothing and are ideal for taking up small chunks of time in a typical day during activities like waiting in line or commuting on public transportation.

Candy Crush Saga alone has 93 million daily active users and 1085 million daily game plays, King says in the filing. The company’s profit has skyrocketed from $8 million in 2012 to $568 million in 2013. Earnings have also grown from $28 million in 2012 to $825 million in 2013.

Candy Crush has proven to be the most-downloaded and most-profitable free mobile game, according to data from AppAnnie cited in a Wall Street Journal report. Candy Crush has been highly successful on Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) App Store, Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Google Play store, and via Facebook (NASDAQ:FB). Given the quickly changing tastes of mobile gamers, King has to prove that it can continuously be successful even when the next Candy Crush competitor comes along. Mobile gamers don’t really have any loyalty towards a specific company and will simply choose whatever game is free, easy to use, and addicting.