King Entertainment Digital, the Dublin-based gamemaker responsible for the famously addictive mobile title Candy Crush Saga, has filed papers with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission – the first step in the long road to an initial public offering, or IPO.
"The number of shares to be offered and the price range for the offering have not yet been determined," reps for the company said in a press release. "King intends to list its ordinary shares on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol KING."
King, which has studios across Europe, says its revenue hit $1.88 billion in 2013, a major leap up from the $164.4 million posted the year prior. Numbers like that are designed to gin up interest – and optimism – in the company and its future. But as analyst Josef Schuster pointed out in an interview today with Reuters, social game companies such as Zynga, haven't exactly fared particularly well on the stock market.
Candy Crush Saga is "a hot game and King is a fast-growing company, but obviously you have precedents for these type of companies that have been affected by the boom and bust cycles of the game market," Mr. Schuster told Reuters.
Moreover, there isn't any indication that King has any games in the works that could rival the astonishing popularity of Candy Crush Saga, which has been downloaded approximately half a billion times. "It’s not like you get a million of these types of games, just a handful a year have the staying power," Marcos Sanchez, vice president at App Annie, explained to the Guardian.