Tencent is flexing its muscles to tap into the lucrative mobile game market through buying a majority stake in a video game company.
The Chinese internet giant has signed a deal to acquire up to 84% of Supercell, Finnish maker of “Clash of Clans”, from SoftBank with US$8.6 billion.
This is Tencent’s biggest-ever deal with an aim to consolidate its leading position in the PC and mobile game market.
The deal values the game maker at US$10.2 billion. After the acquisition, Supercell will continue to be operationally independent.
Ilkka Paananen, CEO of Supercell, said: “This new partnership offers us exciting growth opportunities in China, where we will be able to reach hundreds of millions of new gamers via Tencent’s channels.”
Martin Lau, president of Tencent, said: “Tencent is dedicated to building long-term strategic partnerships with leading game companies. We are excited that Supercell is joining our global network of game partners, and will preserve their independence and enhance their advantages, thus bringing even more exciting gaming experiences to players around the world.”
Founded in 2010, Supercell’s annual revenue reached US$2.33 billion in 2015 while net profit was US$964 million.
The company has launched several popular games, including Clash of Clans, Hay Day, Boom Beach and Clash Royale.