Gaming group Aristocrat Leisure has announced that they've purchased social online gaming firm Big Fish Games for a princely $990 million.
The agreement for the purchase includes a straight out cash offer and would see Big Fish operating as an independent subsidiary, offering their services through mobile apps and through social media platforms like Facebook. The deal is expected to be completed early next year. For their part, Aristocrat is funding the purchase with a seven year loan for $890 million.
Speaking about the purchase Aristocrat CEO Trevor Corker said, "The acquisition of Big Fish will immediately provide scale across our entire digital platform, following the recent acquisition of Plarium, which expanded our digital business into the fast growing social gaming market.
"Our digital revenues approximately double from Aus$651m, pro-forma for the acquisition of Plarium, to Aus$1.3bn for the year ended September 30, 2017.
"Our social casino business will become the second largest social casino publisher globally, with revenues increasing from Aus$383m to Aus$641m for the year ended September 30, 2017.
"The acquisition of Big Fish will also materially expand our social gaming footprint, positioning Aristocrat to further capitalise on growth in mobile gaming following the acquisition of Plarium.
"Through continued optimisation of Big Fish's existing successful applications, together with Big Fish's attractive pipeline of new titles across both social casino and social gaming, this transaction ideally positions us to capitalise on the positive growth outlook in each of these mark."