Ubisoft Acquires Developer Of "Hyper-Casual" Games

The Assassin's Creed publisher buys a 70% stake in Paris-based Green Panda Games.

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Assassin's Creed and Far Cry publisher Ubisoft has added another studio to its stable.

The company bought a 70 percent stake in the "hyper-casual" free-to-play game developer Green Panda Games. The studio and Ubisoft are both headquartered in Paris, France. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, though Ubisoft did say the agreement gives Ubisoft the option to buy 100 percent of Green Panda's shares in the next four years.

Green Panda--which is staffed by 30 people--is the developer and publisher of mobile games like Sushi Bar, Terrarium, Emoji Craft, and Golf Inc Tycoon, among many others. In all, the company has released 55 games since its founding in 2013. Altogether, the studio's games have reached 85 million people around the globe, according to a press release from Ubisoft.

As for why Ubisoft is buying a controlling stake in Green Panda, the company said Green Panda gives Ubisoft a "sharp editorial vision in the idle games segment, data-based iterative creative processes, and undisputed expertise in both user acquisition and ad monetization strategies."

Ubisoft Mobile boss Jean-Michel Detoc said, "This acquisition strengthens our position in the hyper-casual market, particularly within the idle games segment."

Green Panda founder Guillaume Sztejnberg, meanwhile, said in his own statement that the studio is "delighted to be coming on board with Ubisoft..."

This is just the latest move from Ubisoft to invest further into mobile games. In 2016, the company acquired developer Ketchapp. Ubisoft already has a mobile game business, one of its biggest and best-known franchises being Hungry Shark.

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