SoftBank and GungHo buy majority stake in Finnish gaming firm

15 October 2013 |

Japanese communications provider SoftBank and video gaming firm GungHo Online Entertainment have partnered to acquire a 51% stake in Finnish gaming company Supercell for $1.5 billion.

Supercell will continue to operate independently, but will leverage SoftBank’s resources and become an official subsidiary of the Japanese firm.

Its collaboration with SoftBank is expected to allow Supercell to extend its global gaming footprint, following the enormous success of its two gaming apps, Clash of Clans and Hay Day.

Ilkka Paananen, CEO at Supercell, told his 100 staff via a blog post: “The new partnership will accelerate Supercell towards our goal of being the first truly global games company, and gives us time to get there.”

GungHo, founded by the brother of Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son, has already collaborated with Supercell and is focussed on expanding into other markets.

SoftBank acquired US giant Sprint Nextel in July this year, and hopes the acquisition of Supercell will help it towards its aim of becoming the world’s number one mobile internet company.

“We scour the globe in search of interesting opportunities and right now some of the most exciting companies and innovations are coming out of Finland,” said Son.

“Supercell is one of those rare companies.”

Paananen stressed that despite its global affiliations, Supercell would remain Finnish and the purchasing company would be incorporated into the country.