Supercell on the hunt for acquisitions as Clash Royale surpasses $1bn

Tencent-owned Finnish mobile powerhouse Supercell is reportedly on the lookout for purchases.

That’s according to the Financial Times story, in which the the firm’s CEO Ilkka Paananen said that it was ‘no secret’ that the company was looking to get involved with other studios.

It’s no secret we have been looking at other teams, and we are absolutely looking to a selective few acquisitions outside Helsinki and Finland as well,” Mr Paananen said.

We have also started to grow Supercell’s Shanghai office and taken the first steps to integrate into WeChat.”

The FT says that Supercell is looking to buy new studios as the firm’s ‘sales stall’. Presumably this is in reference to one of its pillar games, Clash of Clans, which saw revenue stay flat at 1.8bn, compared with a 36 per cent rise between 2014 and 2015.

Paananen says that this flatness was due, in part, to the cultural phenomenon that was Pokmon Go.

Pokmon Go came along in the summer and many of our players shifted there,” said Paananen.

Players have more than 700,000 games to choose from. Game developers have to earn their players every single day.”

It’s not all bad news, though. The company reports sales of $2.3bn in 2016, Paananen saying that it was Supercell’s best year yet.

According to research firm Sensor Tower, Supercell’s March 2016 release Clash Royale made $1bn in under 12 months. The company also says that Clash Royale grossed five times as much as Clash of Clans did in the same length of time. In April 2016, Newzoo predicted Clash Royale could be a billion-dollar franchise.

In a statement, Paananen said: 2016 was our best year so far. We released our fourth game, Clash Royale, which has been really successful so far – topping the charts in 131 countries right away and has now spent a total of 130 days at number one in the U.S. To do this in the most competitive environment for mobile games ever, with over 750 new games released every day on average, is a fantastic achievement.

Just as importantly, our three existing games continued to thrive – each of them has not only reached the top 10, but stayed there for a long time. It has been incredible to see how our games have become part of peoples’ lives this way, we have millions of players all over the world who have played our games for years. That has always been the long-term vision of Supercell, to be the best place in the world for the best teams to produce games that people want to play for years and years.

As I said last year, and I’m pleased to report again, what makes me proud is that we’ve managed to stay as a small company despite this success. At the end of 2016, we were 213 people in total in our five offices across the world.”

Chinese games giant Tencent bought Supercell for $8.6bn in June 2016.

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