South Korea’s largest mobile games company Netmarble agreed to acquire most of US rival Kabam’s assets as it steps up a push into western markets.
Netmarble’s acquisition includes the Vancouver studio, which created Kabam’s most successful game – “Marvel: Contest of Champions”.
The game brought in more than $450 million in global revenue since its launch two years ago, generating the bulk of Kabam’s sales in the process.
While financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported Kabam received several offers for the Vancouver studio earlier this year ranging from $700 million to $800 million. The Netmarble deal is within the range, a WSJ source said.
Netmarble is planning an IPO worth approximately $1.7 billion in the first half of 2017 as it looks to further fund its aggressive push in the mobile gaming market.
“We are looking forward to strengthening Netmarble’s business in the western markets, including the US, through this deal,” said Seungwon Lee, chief global officer at the company.
Along with the Kabam name, Netmarble is also acquiring marketing and customer support teams, and is taking on about 250 staff from the company, nearly half of its total employees.
Consultancy firm Sensor Tower ranked Netmarble as the 13th largest mobile games company in Q3 with $183 million in revenue. Kabam ranked 32nd with $60 million.