In a strategic move to become the world's first company to deliver integrated casual-games solutions across multiple platforms, online games powerhouse Oberon Media today announced its intention to acquire I-play, the independent leader in casual mobile games. In conjunction, Oberon Media also announced an additional round of funding from existing and new investors including Goldman Sachs, Oak Investment Partners, Lehman Brothers and others.
Oberon Media is the fastest growing company in the casual games category, with a growth rate greater than 100 percent year-over-year. The combined company will hold an intellectual property portfolio with more than a thousand games including chart-toppers Agatha Christie – Death on the Nile, Dream Day Wedding and The Fast and The Furious, the ultimate casual mobile racing franchise, which boasts more than 7 million, downloads to date. Together, Oberon and I-play have global distribution partnerships with more than 350 partners and more than 1000 revenue engines through carrier networks and online partners such as: Microsoft, Comcast, Sprint, AT&T, Yahoo Games, Verizon, Electronic Arts, AOL Games, France Telecom and NHN, among others.
"This acquisition strengthens Oberon Media's multi-platform strategy and we are now positioned as the undisputed leader in one of the hottest growth markets: mass-market casual games," said Tomer Ben-Kiki, CEO and Co-Founder, Oberon Media. "The acquisition bolsters the mobile arm of the industry's first true casual-game triple play, complementing Oberon Media's existing platform. We are now poised to revolutionize the casual games category, offering our partners access to more than a thousand of the most popular casual games, delivered to their consumers' ‘screen of choice': online, mobile and TV."
"We welcome the support and confidence in our vision and the company's growth prospects that this latest round of financing represents," added Tal Kerret, Chairman and Co-Founder, Oberon Media. "We will leverage this added support to continue executing on our vision to make casual games globally available across all types of media."
Oberon Media expects to continue operations in both companies' existing locations worldwide and maintain the I-play name and brand. David Gosen, currently CEO of I-play, will lead Oberon Media's mobile games business worldwide.
"Oberon Media and I-play are a perfect strategic fit, sharing the same casual philosophy and consumer-centric approach to the games market," said David Gosen, I-play CEO. "I-play brings some of the most successful game franchises on mobile, deep global distribution and powerful proprietary technology. Oberon Media's online distribution will propel the growth of mobile games by driving awareness and accessibility, while complementing and working in partnership with traditional on-deck distribution."