King Digital Entertainment, developer of popular game "Candy Crush Saga," will open trading tomorrow on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol KING) priced at $22.50 a share.
At that price, King's IPO would have an eye-popping market value of $7.1 billion.
According to analysts, the price reflects the fact that King depends on Candy Crush for 78 percent of its sales. Although King has added four additional products, analysts say few developers of mobile games historically have been able to come up with more than one monster hit.
Investors are already comparing King to Zynga, the creator of Farmville. Zynga peaked about three months after its IPO on December 16, 2011. The stock is down 50.5 percent since then.
Unlike Zynga, King is profitable and has less than a third of Zynga's employee base. Last year, King made $568 million in profit on sales of $1.9 billion, a 40 percent increase from the year before.
"Candy Crush" is a puzzle game. Players move through 500 different levels of play, each offering a slightly harder challenge. Each play session lasts only long enough to keep users entertained on coffee breaks or while in transit.
Some sweet stats:
- Since Candy Crush debuted on mobile devices in November 2012, it's been downloaded more than 500 million times. - On average, 93 million people play 1.085 billion Candy Crush games every day. - Candy Crush rakes in nearly $10 million a week (that's a lot of "boosters"!) - Candy Crush was one of the most downloaded apps in 2013 and remains in the top grossing lists worldwide.