Activision Blizzard to acquire King for $5.9 billion

Acquisition expected to be completed in spring 2016.

Activision and King

Activision Blizzard will acquire King Digital Entertainment for $5.9 billion, the company announced.

The acquisition was unanimously approved by the boards of directors at both Activision Blizzard and King, and is expected to be completed by spring 2016.

King operates two of the top five highest-grossing mobile games in the U.S., including Candy Crush Saga and Candy Crush Soda Saga. Activision Blizzard says the addition of King’s portfolio combined with its own gives it a “world-class interactive entertainment portfolio of top-performing franchises.”

Find statements from each company below.

Bobby Kotick – Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard

“The combined revenues and profits solidify our position as the largest, most profitable standalone company in interactive entertainment. With a combined global network of more than half a billion monthly active users, our potential to reach audiences around the world on the device of their choosing enables us to deliver great games to even bigger audiences than ever before.

“Riccardo, Sebastian, and Stephane are some of the best minds in the business, and we have long-admired King for consistently creating incredibly fun, deeply engaging free-to-play games that capture the imaginations of players across ages and demographics. Activision Blizzard will provide King with experience, support and investment to continue to build on their tremendous legacy and reach new potential. We share an unwavering commitment to attracting and developing the best talent in the business, and we are excited about what we will be able to accomplish together.”

Riccardo Zacconi – Chief Executive Officer of King

“We are excited to be entering into this Acquisition with Activision Blizzard. Since 2003, we have built one of the largest player networks on mobile and Facebook, with 474 million monthly active users in the third quarter 2015, and our talented team has created some of the most successful mobile game franchises. We believe that the Acquisition will position us very well for the next phase of our company’s evolution and will bring clear benefits to our players and employees. We will combine our expertise in mobile and free-to-play with Activision Blizzard’s world-class brands and proven track record of building and sustaining the most successful franchises, to bring the best games in the world to millions of players worldwide. We are very much looking forward to working with Activision Blizzard. We have two teams that, together, will have an amazing footprint, innovative technology, and leadership across platforms, and unique, established IPs to delight one of the largest networks of players in the world.”

Gerhard Florin – Chairman of King’s board of directors

“The Acquisition provides a return to King shareholders through the premium that it provides to King’s share price and the immediate liquidity that the Acquisition will provide to all of our shareholders upon completion. The King board of directors believes that Activision Blizzard’s cash offer is attractive given the balance of future opportunities, risks and competitive forces confronting King’s business.”

Read the full press release at Business Wire.

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