數據分析:被併購的Plarium是以什麼條件被估值5億美元的

原文作者:Matt Suckley 譯者:Megan Shieh

澳洲公司Aristocrat近日斥資5億美元收購了以色列移動遊戲開發商Plarium。

這個已經不是Aristocrat第一次涉足移動領域了,2012年,它收購了Product Madness。

這筆交易推動4X策略遊戲《Vikings: War of Clans》的開發商Plarium成爲了Machine Zone的直接競爭對手。

那麼Aristocrat到底看上了Plarium什麼?這次收購明顯偏離了Aristocrat的固有業務。

Plarium(from insidesocialgames.com)

Plarium(from insidesocialgames.com)

奠定基礎

plarium成立於2009年,以開發社交網絡大型多人在線遊戲(MMO)起步。MMO依然是它的開發重點,不過自2013年以來,它的焦點幾乎完全轉向了移動領域。

有趣的是,Plarium的早期移動遊戲之一《PlaySlots》就是casino遊戲。該遊戲仍在運營,但是它在美國此類銷量排行榜上名列779,這不可能是Aristocrat收購案背後的原因。

2015年的《Vikings: War of Clans》營收商飛出可觀,大幅度增加了Plarium的價值。

2016年間,《Vikings: War of Clans》的排名幾乎一直保持在前100,同年5月10號達到歷史最高排名33。

這個局面持續到了2017年3月左右,然後排名開始略微下降。截至2017年9月5日,它在美國銷量排行榜上排第161位。

同一天,該遊戲在俄羅斯排名第13位,在德國排名第36位,在英國排名第66位,這時距遊戲最初發行已經有兩年多了。

資產組合戰略

除了《Vikings》,Plarium也用其他遊戲證明了它對策略類手遊的熟練程度。

《Stormfall: Rise of Balur》實際上比《Vikings》更早發佈,雖然沒有達到同等高度的成功,但它也是Plarium的關鍵遊戲之一。

該遊戲2015年全年表現良好,在美國銷量排行榜上幾乎一直躋身前200,但在2016年開始出現變化。截至2017年9月5日,該遊戲在美國銷量榜上排第655位。

俄羅斯和德國再次成爲《Stormfall: Rise of Balur》的主市場,2015年9月5日,該遊戲在俄羅斯排名第99位,在德國排第143位。

《Throne: Kingdom at War》於2016年11月發佈,不過它並沒有達到公司其他同類遊戲的成就,也尚未擠入過美國銷量排行榜前200的位置。2017年9月5日,距離發佈不到一年,該遊戲的排名就已經急劇下滑到第567位。

但在Plarium近期發佈的策略遊戲中,這已經算是最好的表現了。

在美國iPhone銷量排行榜上,《Soldiers Inc.: Mobile Warfare》的歷史最高排名爲289,目前下滑到第937位。即時戰略遊戲《Gates of War》甚至幾乎沒有在排行榜上出現過,而2017年5月發行的《Terminator Genisys:Future War》排名從未突破317。

多樣化

儘管營收狀況不錯,但Plarium在自己的專業領域裏似乎有點迷失方向。

在Plarium的收購聲明中,Aristocrat首席執行官Trevor Croker 說,Plarium將涉足多樣化、極具吸引力的手遊類型,包括戰略,RPG和休閒,以此來推動實現Aristocrat進軍移動領域的雄心。

其實Plarium對休閒類遊戲並不生疏,它在2017年發佈了《Family Zoo: The Story》和《Rio: Match 3 Party》。《Rio: Match 3 Party》於今年1月份發行,但幾乎沒有對銷量排行榜產生影響。《Family Zoo》於同年8月20日發行,持續呈上升狀態。發行日在美國iPhone銷量排行榜上排第1324位,半個月內上升到了第374位。

《Family Zoo》的排名是否能繼續上升還有待觀察,但是這個遊戲以及Plarium的整體休閒產出將不得不與Product Madness達成協同作用。

考慮到其資產組合的相對優勢,Plarium近期發行遊戲的表現無關緊要。但隨着其旗艦遊戲的衰落,它需要儘快開始生產更多的熱門產品。

同樣不容忽視的問題是,公司能否靈活地改變發展軌跡,並在RPG和休閒遊戲中獲得成功。畢竟該公司自成立以來的主要關注點一直是社交網絡MMO。

如果不行,那Aristocrat就只能無聲地哭泣了。

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Australian casino outfit Aristocrat recently paid $500 million to acquire Israeli mobile game developer Plarium.

This isn’t the coin-op machine manufacturer’s first foray into the mobile space, having picked up social casino developer Product Madness back in 2012. But that move from physical casino games to virtual ones was not altogether surprising.

This deal, which establishes the firm as a direct competitor to Machine Zone with 4X strategy games like Vikings: War of Clans, is rather more so.

So what did Aristocrat see in Plarium that made it worth splashing out $500 million on, in the process straying significantly from its established business?

Laying the foundations

Founded in 2009, Plarium started out developing browser-based MMOs. The MMO remains the genre in whch it works most, but since 2013 its focus has shifted almost entirely to mobile.

Interestingly though, given its new parent company, one of Plarium’s very early mobile titles is social casino game PlaySlots. It’s still live, but at 799th in the US top grossing charts’ social casino category, it won’t have been a motivating factor for Aristocrat’s purchase.

Vikings: War of Clans, the 2015 title with which Plarium has found considerable success, adds far greater value.

The game ranked inside the top 100 for all but a handful of days in 2016, peaking at 33rd on May 10th 2016.

This consistency continues until around March 2017, where it began to slightly decline. As of September 5th 2017, it was 161st in the US top grossing charts.

Elsewhere on September 5th 2017 the game recorded top grossing positions of 13th in Russia, 36th in Germany and 66th in the UK – more than two years after its original launch.

Strategic portfolio

In addition to Vikings, Plarium has shown its proficiency in the mobile strategy genre with other successful titles.

Stormfall: Rise of Balur, which in fact launched before Vikings, hasn’t hit the same heights but has still been a key game for Plarium.

It performed well throughout 2015, remaining largely in the top 200 on the US grossing charts, but became less consistent in 2016. As of September 5th 2017, it sat at 655th in US top grossing.

Russia and Germany are once again major markets for Stormfall: Rise of Balur, with the game ranking at 99th and 143rd respectively on September 5th.

Throne: Kingdom at War launched in November 2016, but hasn’t enjoyed the success of Plarium’s previous, similar titles. It’s yet to break into the top 200 US grossing positions, and after launching in November 2016 it’s already slipped to 567th as of September 5th 2017.

But this has been the best of Plarium’s recent strategy launches.

Mobile Strike-alike Soldiers Inc.: Mobile Warfare peaked at 289th in the US iPhone grossing charts and now finds itself at 937th, ambitious real-time strategy Gates of War has barely even registered on the grossing charts, while May 2017′s Terminator Genisys: Future War has failed to register higher than 317th.

Diversification

So, while by no means in ill health, Plarium does appear to be a company that’s slightly lost its way in its own specialist genre.

Upon the announcement of Plarium’s acquisition, Aristocrat CEO Trevor Croker said that Plarium will support the company’s ambitions by “diversifying into attractive new mobile gaming segments, including strategy, RPG and casual”.

And Plarium has already dabbled in the latter, withRio: Match 3 Party and Family Zoo: The Story both launching in 2017. Rio launched in January and has made little impact on the top grossing charts.

Family Zoo launched more recently, on August 20th. It’s been on the rise since then, from 1,342nd the US iPhone top grosing charts on launch day to 374th as of September 5th.

Whether it can rise more remains to be seen, but it – and the company’s casual output as a whole – will have to if Plarium is to achieve any synergy with Product Madness, as outlined in its complementary strategy for the pair.

The indifferent performance of Plarium’s recent launches shouldn’t be too much of a worry right now, given the relative strength of its portfolio. But with its flagship games in decline it will need to start producing more hits soon.

Also pressing is whether this 1,200-strong company, whose primary focus since its inception has been a specific kind of MMO, is now agile enough to change its trajectory and find success with RPGs and casual games.

If it cannot, Aristocrat may be left wishing it had stuck with the comforting familiarity of slots.(Source:pocketgamer.biz