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Naturalmotion sold to Zynga for $527 million, Benchmark’s successful games exits hit $2 billion

By on January 30, 2014
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I am so pleased with the news that NaturalMotion has sold to Zynga for $527 million. It’s a great result for the UK games investors when investors, entrepreneurs and game makers can see that you can make a decent (fabulous) return from investing in games businesses. It’s great when a solid, successful business, founded on making great games that are loved by its players, is acquired for what looks (although I have no knowledge of NaturalMotions’s financial performance) for a great price. It’s great that Zynga is seeking routes to stay relevant by using less than a quarter of its cash balance to buy a company that will help it become successful and relevant in a fast changing gaming landscape.


It’s also great news for Benchmark. The VC has made early stage investments in four companies (Jamdat, Riot, Gaikai, NaturalMotion) which have exited for a gross value of $2 billion. That’s a great track record, and Mitch Lasky, the Benchmark partner who sat on NaturalMotion’s board, has blogged that they are looking for new investments. I look forward with interest to seeing which ones they make.

About Nicholas Lovell

Nicholas is the founder of Gamesbrief, a blog dedicated to the business of games. It aims to be informative, authoritative and above all helpful to developers grappling with business strategy. He is the author of a growing list of books about making money in the games industry and other digital media, including How to Publish a Game and Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games, and Penguin-published title The Curve:
  • Max N

    It’s a great exit for Natural Motion and on the face of it a good move by Zynga.
    However. Will there still be the same commitment and drive from the Natural Motion management and teams as before the deal? Will Zynga meddle too much? Will the best people leave?
    There is a chance it could all unravel as quickly as it came together, although I hope it doesn’t and they carry on making interesting games.

  • Sik

    I swear that no matter how many times I read this you’re sounding like a PR man here (even though I know you aren’t). What’s up?