Alibaba invests $120 mln in Kabam in latest US deal

Alibaba joins a roster of Kabam investors that includes Google Ventures, Warner Bros. and Intel, among others

Kabam Inc, a producer of games for mobile devices, received a $120 million investment from Alibaba Holding Ltd as part of a plan to distribute titles like Lord of the Rings in China.
The funds will be used to finance growth, and an executive from Alibaba will join Kabam’s board, according to a statement on Thursday from the San Francisco-based company, which is now valued at more than $1 billion. Other details of the investment weren’t disclosed.
The accord gives Kabam a tie-up with China’s largest e- commerce company. Kabam had 2013 sales of more than $360 million, double the previous year.
Alibaba is preparing for an initial public offering in the US that may value its business at $154 billion, according to the average estimate of five analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
“Asia represents 50% of the worldwide revenue for games,” Kent Wakeford, Kabam’s chief operating officer, said in a telephone interview. The Alibaba partnership gives Kabam a structural advantage in the world’s largest gaming market. That’s a huge advantage for us.

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