Screenshot from »FarmVille 2«: A digital idyll
Photo: Handout Zynga / dpa
The dream of life on the farm inspired millions of people.
At least back then, in 2009, when the country life simulation "FarmVille" started on Facebook.
In its prime, the online game had 85 million players, up to 32 million of whom gathered every day to plow their virtual fields in the social network, reports the New York Times.
But that's long over.
A year ago, »FarmVille« was switched off on Facebook.
Nonetheless, the development company Zynga, from which the "FarmVille" series comes, is now worth almost 13 billion dollars to the game publisher Take Two.
It's one of the most valuable deals in the gaming industry to date.
The group, from which blockbuster games such as "Civilization", "Grand Theft Auto" and "Red Dead Redemption" come, is prepared to pay a surcharge of almost two thirds compared to the current share price of Zynga.
According to a press release, the company's shareholders will receive $ 6.36 in Take Two shares for each Zynga share and $ 3.50 in payout.
This results in an enterprise value of $ 12.7 billion.
The transaction is expected to close by June 30, 2022.
For Zynga shareholders, the deal still has a stale aftertaste, the issue price in 2011 was 9.86 dollars and thus above the value now achieved.
In their prime, however, the papers were up to $ 13.
Save $ 100 million a year
After his rocket-like rise, Zynga has always struggled with financial difficulties since the termination of an exclusive contract with Facebook.
Although the company resides chic with its headquarters in San Francisco in a former department store, 520 employees were laid off in 2013 in order to reduce running costs.
Finally, a new managing director, Microsoft manager Don Mattrick, was hired to turn things around, which he did not succeed.
After almost two years, he was dismissed and Zynga founder Mark Pincus took over the job.
That didn't help in the long term either.
With the acquisition of the "FarmVille" company, Take Two can "significantly diversify" its business, says Take-Two's chairman and CEO, Harry Strauss Zelnick.
Zynga has added browser and smartphone games to his company's portfolio, which has previously focused on console and PC games.
In addition, the manager expects so-called synergy effects from the merger, which are gladly used in such cases.
In the first two years he wants to save 100 million dollars each.