Appolicious powers Verizon Educational Tools

Zynga confirms OMGPOP acquisition

by Brad Spirrison

It’s been a productive couple of months for New York-based developer OMGPOP. The company behind Draw Something – which generated more than 25 million downloads in its first six weeks – was acquired by Zynga, the company confirms.

While Zynga would not confirm purchase price, AllThingsD is reporting the purchase price to be just north of $200 million.

We noted earlier this week that Zynga and other suitors were circling OMGPOP, which has been around for years but only recently entered the mobile gaming space. Draw Something’s immediate success was historic, surpassing Angry Birds and Instagram among others in the time it took to generate 20 million+ downloads and become a pop-cultural phenomenon.

OMGPOP CEO and General Manager is now General Manager of Zynga New York. The company's New York-based development team will be joining Zynga.

Enjoy our video review of Draw Something:

Here is the official press release:

PRESS RELEASE

ZYNGA ACQUIRES OMGPOP, CREATORS OF THE CULTURAL HIT “DRAW SOMETHING”

NEW YORK and SAN FRANCISCO – March 21, 2012 – Zynga (NASDAQ: ZNGA), the world’s leading provider of social game services, today announced it has acquired New York-based social game developer OMGPOP, makers of the popular cultural hit mobile game, Draw Something, and over 35 additional social games. As a part of the Zynga family, OMGPOP will focus on building new mobile IP and strengthening its existing portfolio of fun and creative social games.

“The OMGPOP team has created a game that’s fun, expressive and engenders real social interaction,” said Mark Pincus, founder and CEO of Zynga. “Draw Something has captured the imagination of millions of people around the world. We love the way they’ve worked playful and relevant culture into their games from Devo to Daft Punk, from Lin to Beckham. We’re honored to have the opportunity to partner with and support such an innovative team of creative inventors.”

“I want to thank our players, our fans, everyone who’s ever drawn something. You’ve made this game into something truly special. Zynga offered us a chance to focus on Draw Something – they know the power of the game and they planned with us how to let it keep rolling in the same fun, irreverent, social way that it has been. That was really important to us,” said Dan Porter, CEO of OMGPOP. “The game will stay true to you and what you love, and it’s my solemn vow that the magic of Draw Something will not change. I know without a doubt that Zynga is the right partner for OMGPOP. Our new partners at Zynga know how to innovate at scale, and they’re pushing the limits of social with their mobile games. With the added resources we now have, and the deep gaming experience we can draw from, we can’t wait to continue to surprise our users. If you’re a fan, a player of ours, I can’t wait to show you what’s in store – it’s going to be drawsome.”

In the six weeks since Draw Something launched, it has been downloaded over 35 million times. Draw Something’s eye-popping stats include:

  • In the last week, more than 1 billion drawings have been created.
  • Draw Something had three drawings per second the day the game launched.
  • Yesterday, Draw Something has over 3,000 drawings per second at its peak.
  • Draw Something is the #1 word game in 84 countries according to the Apple App Store – shout out to Sweden and Norway for being the first two countries to recognize Draw Something’s greatness. Nordic Love!
  • The most popular words in Draw Something are: Starfish, pregnant, hangman, six pack, boom box
  • The least popular word in Draw Something is latrine
  • The best guessed words in Draw Something are: Rainbow, catfish, sun, fish, house, god tornado
  • The least guessed words in Draw Something are: Oar, Metroid, Warhol, pounce, polaroid, meathead, Autobots

“At Zynga we’re committed to building brands that we’re proud of and that our players absolutely love,” said David Ko, Chief Mobile Officer of Zynga. “We want people to play our games and feel a fun and valuable social connection to their friends and family. We think Draw Something is one of the most social, most expressive mobile games ever built with its unique social competition and unmatched player generated content. We’re excited about the brands OMGPOP has developed to date and we look forward to supporting the team’s creativity and helping scale their incredible games to an even bigger global audience.”

OMGPOP began as iminlikewithyou, a social network for people to meet and play games. The company soon after launched its social gaming website, OMGPOP.com in 2009. OMGPOP is best known for Draw Something, one of the fastest growing word games of all time. The game has stormed to success through a combination of creativity and nostalgia paired with pop culture hooks. How would you draw Jeremy Lin, Katniss Everdeen or LMFAO? Draw Something is available on iOS, Android and Facebook.

Today's announcement follows on the heels the recent announcement of Zynga.com, a new play service that will serve as an online destination dedicated to social games, as well as the Zynga Platform, which will allow third party developers to create and publish games on the Platform. Zynga is currently working closely with select Platform partners, and plans to open up the Zynga Platform and make it more widely available to all third party game developers through an API later this year.

Over the past six months Zynga mobile has been focused on creating fun, high quality, social mobile gaming experience for players on-the-go. With 15 game launches in the past two quarters, Zynga Mobile is bringing a variety of genres and games to reflect its players’ lifestyles and provide them with the social experiences they want, at any time and on any device, regardless of platform.  Zynga Mobile is building evergreen brands like the With Friends franchise including Words With Friends, Scramble With Friends and Hanging With Friends and the Dream franchise.

OMGPOP will remain headquartered in New York (at its totally cool offices) and report to David Ko, Chief Mobile Officer of Zynga.