Scientific Games acquires 10.72% of NYX Gaming Group

Scientific GamesScientific Games Corporation has acquired ownership of 11,600,000 ordinary shares of NYX Gaming Group Limited, representing approximately 10.72% of the issued and outstanding ordinary shares of NYX. The acquired shares were purchased through the facilities of the TSX Venture Exchange at prices ranging from CAD$2.22 to CAD$2.35 per share, representing an aggregate purchase price of CAD$27,054,565. The transaction will be financed with cash on hand and debt. It represents a 112 percent premium to NYX’s closing stock price on September 19, 2017; and the transaction is expected to be accretive to earnings and cash flow in the first year and leverage neutral at closing.

NYX is a digital gaming provider with a staff of more than 1,000 employees globally, including more than 600 engineers and has more than 200 unique customers.

The award-winning NYX OGS™ (Open Gaming System), which allows licensees to leverage the best-of-breed, multi-vendor casino content from around the world, is acknowledged to be the industry’s market-leading gaming offering. From its own studios and a broad partner network of innovative third party suppliers, NYX offers customers the widest portfolio of content available, with access to more than 2,000 game titles, via OGS™.

Kevin Sheehan, Scientific Games’ President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “This important transaction creates a global gaming and lottery powerhouse. Scientific Games will be a stronger industry leader offering one of the broadest end-to-end portfolios of engaging content, innovative technologies and digital products and services across gaming and lottery”.

USA, Las Vegas, NV

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Penn National Gaming to Acquire Pinnacle Entertainment for $2.8BN

Penn National GamingPenn National Gaming has entered an agreement to acquire Pinnacle Entertainment for approximately $2.8 billion. Under the terms of the agreement, Pinnacle shareholders will receive $20.00 in cash and 0.42 shares of Penn National common stock for each Pinnacle share, which implies a total purchase price of $32.47 per Pinnacle share. The transaction has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies and is expected to close in the second half of 2018.

Pinnacle owns and operates 16 gaming and entertainment facilities in 11 jurisdictions across the United States. Following the acquisition of Pinnacle and the planned divestiture of four of its properties to Boyd Gaming Corporation, Penn National will have greater operational and geographic diversity and operate a combined 41 properties in 20 jurisdictions throughout North America. The transaction is expected to generate $100 million in annual run-rate cost synergies following integration and is anticipated to be immediately accretive to free cash flow in the first year.

Timothy J. Wilmott, Chief Executive Officer of Penn National Gaming, commented, “The combined company will benefit from enhanced scale, additional growth opportunities and best-in-class operations, creating a more efficient integrated gaming company. Going forward, we will have the financial and operational flexibility to further execute on our strategic objectives, while maintaining our track record of industry-leading profit margins and generating significant cash flow to reduce leverage over time.”

USA, Wyomissing, PA & Las Vegas, NV

Unity Technologies Acquires Game Hosting Division of Multiplay from GAME Digital, PLC

Unity Technologies Inc.Unity Technologies creator of the world’s most popular creation engine that reaches nearly three billion devices worldwide, announced today that the company has entered into a definitive acquisition to acquire Multiplay Ltd and its game hosting business from GAME Digital plc for £19M GBP.

Multiplay is a leading specialist in online game server hosting. Multiplay’s hybrid cloud technology powers some of the world’s largest online games, automatically scaling to meet global player demand. Multiplay’s hybrid approach blends a global network of bare metal servers with the flexible burst capacity from the leading cloud providers and offers a 24/7 team of gaming specialists for round-the-clock monitoring and support to players.

GAME Digital plc comprises three divisions: Retail, Events and esports and Digital Solutions, and delivers for the gaming communities of the UK, Spain and elsewhere. The events business and its associated IP’s will remain with GAME.

John Riccitiello, CEO of Unity Technologies, said, “The team at Multiplay have created scalable multiplayer technology that gives all game creators, from indies to AAA studios, the ability to create performant experiences that can serve hundreds of thousands of players at once. We welcome the Multiplay team to the Unity family.”

USA, San Francisco, CA, England, Southampton

Hasbro acquires a majority interest in mobile games company Backflip Studios

hasbroToy maker Hasbro has acquired a majority stake in Backflip Studios. The Boulder, Colorado based company develops some of the mobile industry’s most popular games including DragonValeNinJump and Paper Toss. Hasbro paid $112 million in an all cash transaction for 70% of the company.

Founded in 2009 by Julian Farrior, Dale Thoms and Tom Blind, Backflip Studios has had more than 300 million downloads of its games. Other titles in their portfolio include, Ragdoll BlasterArmy of Darkness Defense andOutWordedBackflip will continue to develop its own IP, as well as create mobile games featuring many of Hasbro’s best known brands. As part of the transaction, Backflip’s management team will continue to run the company, which will remain in Boulder. Hasbro anticipates the transaction to be neutral to slightly accretive to its 2013 financial results.backflip-logo

“The acquisition of Backflip fits perfectly into our strategy of extending our brands into all forms and formats,” said Brian Goldner, President and CEO of Hasbro, Inc. “As mobile play continues its rapid growth, Backflip’s leadership position, great games and established network of users, makes Hasbro a more meaningful participant in digital gaming. Together with Julian, Dale and the talented team at Backflip, we will continue to take a leadership role in bringing great game play to the mobile environment.”

USA, Pawtucket, RI & Boulder, CO

Future plc – interim results for the half-year ended 31 March 2013

Future plc, the  specialist media group and  digital publisher,has announced  unaudited interim results for the half-year ended 31 March 2013.

Financial Highlights

Future results 2013 v2

Click on the table for a larger image.

Summary

  • Group revenues down 1%, EBITDAE down 23%, impacted by cyclical decline in Games market
  • Group digital revenues up 33% year-on-year and now represent 25% of Group revenues
  • US operations on track to return to EBITDAE profitability in FY13
  • New credit facility for four years to February 2017
  • Sale of UK Rock titles in April for £10.2m strengthens the balance sheet to support continued investment in the transition to a predominantly digital business

Digital highlights

  • Unique users up 46% year-on-year to 51.4 million a month
  • Page views up 38% year-on-year to 299 million a month
  • Digital advertising now represents 57% of total advertising, up from 47% a year ago
  • Over five million digital editions sold across all platforms
  • Over 300,000 subscribers to digital editions, up over 75% since March 2012
  • FutureFolio signed up to power 80 digital magazines for third parties

Mark Wood, Chief Executive, said, “We experienced some difficult trading conditions in the first half, above all in the Games market, which has been in a trough ahead of new console releases from Microsoft and Sony. However, the first half figures mask tremendous progress towards a predominantly digital business, reflected in a 33% growth in digital revenues. “Our refocusing of the US business is on track to meet our commitment to return the US to EBITDAE profitability this year.

“Despite continued challenging conditions, and the impact of the Games cycle, we are seeing increased momentum on commercial revenues, contributions from new initiatives and bottom line improvements from cost efficiencies. These all point to a strong performance in the second half of the year, much as we saw in FY12, and we believe we are on track to achieve results broadly in line with our expectations.”

UK, London

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Intelligent Living Inc. acquires Israeli on-line brain games company, Mind360

intelligent livingFEEL Golf Co., Inc. through its wholly owned subsidiary, Intelligent Living Inc., has acquired Mind360, a company which offers a series of scientifically developed online brain games targeted to improve cognitive skills and memory function. The games on Mind360 are aimed toward sharpening memory, increasing focus, building logical reasoning skills, increasing alertness and awareness, boosting productivity, and exercising the mind. Each player gets a virtual personal brain trainer that helps build up brain function.

Danny Aboody and co-founders Dr. Eran Chajut and Gil Steiner spent 2008 quietly building Mind360, a suite of brain-training games mind360that according to the company “help people boost overall well being and maximize their potential through online well-defined, entertaining cognitive training activities.”

Mind360 has over 10,000 users in every continent with more than 40 games. Sign-up is free and monthly or annual subscriptions are available.

USA, Fort Lauderdale, FL & Israel, Tel Aviv

Wargaming to acquire Gas Powered Games

wargaming

Wargaming, the free-to-play MMO developer and publisher, is to acquire Seattle-based developer Gas Powered Games, the maker of memorable and critically acclaimed franchises such as Dungeon Siege, Supreme Commander and Demigod.

gaspowered

“Gas Powered Games’ heritage and development pedigree shows us just how valuable an addition Chris (Chris Taylor , CEO) and his company will make to the Wargaming family,” said Victor Kislyi, CEO of Wargaming. “Gas Powered Games has a long track record of providing incredibly engaging AAA gaming experiences and we can’t wait to start working with them.”

USA, Emeryville, CA & Seattle, WA

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SEGA acquires THQ Canada

segaSEGA Corporation has acquired THQ Canada. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

THQ Canada has developed million-seller franchise titles such as “Warhammer 40k Dawn of War” and “Company of Heroes” under the brand of Relic Entertainment Studio.thq

Relic Entertainment was established in 1997 and acquired by THQ Canada in 2004. THQ Canada have been known familiarly as Relic Entertainment since the acquisition.

“We are thrilled to have Relic Entertainment join the SEGA family. The acquisition is a strategic fit and a critical step in growing our business,” John Cheng, President and CFO, SEGA of America said. “They are a well-respected studio with a reputation for making creative and innovative games and we look forward to seeing what great things we can create together over the coming years.”

Japan, Tokyo & Canada, Vancouver

Linden Lab acquires Blocksworld

blocksworldLinden Lab, the makers of Second Life and Patterns, has acquired the iPad game Blocksworld.

Blocksworld is an iPad game in which players use cubes, wedges, rockets, wheels, motors and more to easily create 3D models of anything they can imagine – from race cars to animals to robots and more. These models come alive with realistic physics simulation, and users can play, interact with, or even explode their creations. Blocksworld allows users to share their creations with others to explore, play with, and remix to make them their own.

“Blocksworld is a great fit with what we do at Linden Lab,” said Rod Humble, CEO of Linden Lab. “It’s a very user-friendly complement to our portfolio of shared creative spaces. We’re happy to have the Blocksworld team join Linden Lab and are looking forward to bringing Blocksworld to the App Store worldwide soon!”

USA, San Francisco, CA

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Kabam acquires Exploding Barrel Games

kabam1Kabam, producer of free online strategy games, has acquired Exploding Barrel Games. Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Exploding Barrel Games is focused on creating console-quality free-to-play experiences for core gamers. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.explodingbg

“Kabam continues to grow our global studio team with the best talent in the world,” said Andrew Sheppard, Kabam’s President of Studios. “With experience working on multi-billion dollar franchises like Need for Speed and EA Sports titles, and developing blockbusters in nearly every core genre, the team at Exploding Barrel Games is a perfect complement to Kabam’s mission to blend the art of game design with the science of free-to-play distribution.”

Located in Vancouver’s historic Gastown district, Exploding Barrel Games is currently working on three unannounced games and has a rapidly growing team of more than 30 designers, artists, and programmers.

USA, San Francisco, CA & Canada, Vancouver, British Columbia