China’s Tencent has officially confirmed its purchase of a huge stake in mobile game creator Supercell, the studio behind the massively popular Clash of Clans and Clash Royale.
The company announced on Monday that it is acquiring Japanese telco SoftBank’s investment, an 84 % stake in the Finland-based company for a whopping $8.6 billion, reported TechInAsia. The purchase, which almost doubled the Supercell’s value at $10.2 billion, is Tencent’s biggest to date.
The Chinese internet media giant, which provides a variety of services of whose including social networking, web portals and e-commerce, has recently branched out to multiplayer online games with its acquisition of League of Legends’ developer Riot Games, and buying minority stakes in Gears of War creator Epic Games and Activision Blizzard.
Supercell founder Ilkka Paananen wrote about his company’s transition in a blog post, saying that the partnership with Tencent would keep what made Supercell a success while enabling to improve on other aspects of the company.
“We have agreed with Tencent that Supercell will continue to be operationally independent, exactly as it was under SoftBank’s ownership,” said Paananen. The game developer studio will continue to be managed from its Helsinki headquarters.
He also noted the huge market potential brought about by the sale. “Tencent’s platforms reach around a billion users (yes, a billion!). And, they have around 300 million unique users playing games on their platforms,” he said.
For Tencent, the purchase means a return to games and expansion in international clientele. Fortune pointed out that thanks to Supercell, Tencent will capture 13% of the $100 billion global games market this year, cementing its global global dominance in online games.