Angry Birds creator Rovio could soon be worth $1.2 billion

By on August 12, 2011, 3:00 PM

Rovio Mobile, makers of the popular catapult-puzzle game Angry Birds, are said to be in talks with investors to receive funding that would value the company at $1.2 billion. Bloomberg reports that Rovio is considering a “strategic investment from a company in the entertainment business,” citing two unnamed sources with knowledge of the discussions.

No specific suitors were mentioned, but Michael Pachter, managing director of research at Wedbush Securities, believes potential investors could include game developers Electronic Arts and Zynga, media conglomerate News Corp. and Walt Disney.

“I can see how Disney would take ‘Angry Birds’ and turn them into a theme-park ride and a movie,” said Pachter, who is based in Los Angeles. “Zynga could take ‘Angry Birds’ and make it into ‘FarmVille.’”

Rovio was founded in 2003 but didn’t become a household name until December 2009 when the company released Angry Birds for the iPhone. Angry Birds has since become the most successful mobile app of all time, having been downloaded more than 300 million times.

The Finnish-based company hasn’t rested on their laurels, generating $4.2 million in profit in the second half of last year and securing $42 million in investments earlier this year.

If a deal is inked, Rovio would likely use the funding to make an Angry Birds movie (this could be huge if Disney were to get involved) and expand outside of Finland. It was reported a few months ago that Rovio is planning to build up to 200 Angry Birds merchandise stores throughout China. This would be in addition to the Angry Birds online store that has virtually anything you could dream up.

Angry Birds was in the news just yesterday as one of Google’s launch titles for their new gaming service on Google+.




User Comments: 12

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Jibberish18 said:

Funny. When I had my iPhone 3Gs, out of all the games I had, I NEVER touched Angry Birds. Played it a few times and found it boring and not as fun as the other games I had. Then I learn it's become extremely popular. I think porting to Android really helped because people on Android at the time barely had any quality games to play, so they all went to Angry Birds. My theory at least.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Theme park ride? You put on a bird costume, get strapped into a giant rubber band, and propelled at foam buildings and giant stuffed animal pigs.

Hm.

That actually sounds like fun.

TechM633 said:

Man......I need to come up with a fun game, where you throw animals into walls. What a great way to make money. It makes me wish I had thought of that. lol!

matrix86 matrix86 said:

Jibberish18 said:

Funny. When I had my iPhone 3Gs, out of all the games I had, I NEVER touched Angry Birds. Played it a few times and found it boring and not as fun as the other games I had. Then I learn it's become extremely popular. I think porting to Android really helped because people on Android at the time barely had any quality games to play, so they all went to Angry Birds. My theory at least.

So, because you found it boring and never really played it, that means all other iPhone users felt the same? I know a lot of iPhone users that play Angry Birds. I mean yes, the fact it got ported to Android does help, but Android has a ton of apps now, so this theory doesn't hold much ground anymore. I'm sure it did in the beginning, but not anymore. This game is even available for your laptop/desktop, so that makes a difference.

Jibberish18 said:

matrix86 said:

Jibberish18 said:

Funny. When I had my iPhone 3Gs, out of all the games I had, I NEVER touched Angry Birds. Played it a few times and found it boring and not as fun as the other games I had. Then I learn it's become extremely popular. I think porting to Android really helped because people on Android at the time barely had any quality games to play, so they all went to Angry Birds. My theory at least.

So, because you found it boring and never really played it, that means all other iPhone users felt the same? I know a lot of iPhone users that play Angry Birds. I mean yes, the fact it got ported to Android does help, but Android has a ton of apps now, so this theory doesn't hold much ground anymore. I'm sure it did in the beginning, but not anymore. This game is even available for your laptop/desktop, so that makes a difference.

That's not what I meant to say. At the time, it was still a very popular game on the iPhone but what I think really led the way to it becoming truly successful and international was Android. Sure you can find it on things like a Roku box and other devices but what platform has been growing exponentially in the last year or so? Android. Of course it broke ground on the iPhone but I think it went Platinum once Android users got hold of it back when they did (if I'm correct it was one of the original high quality games to come out)

Get what I'm saying?

Guest said:

I played Angry Birds for the first time last night. And it seemed very familiar to me somehow. Then I remembered playing a catapult "puzzle" game just like this a few years ago. It was medieval themed, no birds. Same idea that there are different materials that act differently. But instead of catapulting birds, there was an actual catapult with large stones.

I'm no copyright expert, but the similarities were far too much to be coincidental. I'd go so far as to say Angry Birds copied that older game, slapped on new graphics and sounds and called it Angry Birds.

Any chance that older game was made by the same company as Angry Birds? If not, I call plagiarism shenanigans.

jess3088 jess3088 said:

All my friends are like obssed with this game. Me not so much. Never found the attraction to it. So should not be worth 1.2 bil

Guest said:

Seems pretty silly to build 200 stores to sell the merchandise. There are probably already retail stores in China that could sell the stuff. Is Walmart have any stores there?

Guest said:

And it is worth that just because of ingame publicity?.

Staff
Julio Franco Julio Franco, TechSpot Editor, said:

Pre-IPO valuations are currently bloated, or at least they used to be until the recent stumble in the stock market. Like you I don't believe there's a lot of sense in a 4 million profit/20 million (?) revenue company receiving a 1+ billion valuation, but they may still get funded based on the perspective that by leveraging their momentum in the mobile gaming space and the brand recognition Angry Birds has, they could build a worldwide brand spanning many other products.

ihaveaname said:

Lol ... Angry Birds movie? I'd watch it

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