Zynga Ready To Take On The World…Poker Tour

phone showing Zynga Poker app

The World Poker Tour announced a multi-year gaming partnership with Zynga Inc. Feb. 7 and will introduce WPT-themed tournaments to Zynga Poker later this year.

“We’re incredibly proud to bring the World Poker Tour to Zynga Poker,” said Adam Pliska, CEO of the World Poker Tour, in a

. “Zynga has built the largest social poker game, and we are confident their millions of players will enjoy their experience even more with the introduction of WPT-themed tournaments in Zynga Poker.”

New in-game tournaments on Zynga Poker

Zynga Inc., a leading social-game developer, will bring the WPT experience into Zynga Poker, one of the largest free-to-play poker games.

Bernard Kim, president of publishing at Zynga, said it this way:

“We’re proud to partner with World Poker Tour, a global leader in real-world poker tournaments, to deliver an authentic in-game tournament experience to our Zynga Poker players later this year. WPT has innovated in the sport of poker for more than 16 years, and our new free-to-play WPT-themed Zynga Poker tournaments will put the most competitive and genuine poker experience in the palm of players’ hands.”

Zynga on the up and up

In its fourth quarter, Zynga finished 2017 with $203.6 million in mobile revenue and $190.7 million in mobile bookings. This is a total increase for each of 32 percent year-over-year and 18 percent year-over-year, respectively.

The company boasted 20 million mobile daily active users and 76 million mobile active users. Company net income finished at $12.9 million (up 48 percent).

Zynga profits in its third quarter topped franchise history records in the social casino sphere.

Here are the numbers year over year:

  • Zynga Poker mobile revenue: up 78 percent
  • Zynga mobile bookings: up 81 percent

The company has capitalized on 24 percent of total online game bookings. Slots are the only competitor with 26 percent of the total $165-million pie.

Zynga Poker, CSR 2, and Words with Friends largely drove the growth. Overall cash flow was $35 million in the quarter. That was a $14 million increase year-over-year. At the time, Zynga sat at 19 million daily active users.

The average rating of buy/average pricing target was $4.11.

Analysts project growth

Analysts estimated that Zynga would post $214.4 million in sales for that quarter and calculated the full year at $840 million to $850 million. This year ranges from $881 to $950 million.

“If you look at the story of the quarter, it was the continued performance of our forever franchises, strong momentum in mobile, and then beating consensus and guidance,” Frank Gibeau, CEO of Zynga, said to VentureBeat. “We’re very excited about where we’re at. We do have some additional news. We’re actively trying to grow the company, and we’re pushing live ops really hard. We’re also introducing new games.”

Zynga, WPT expansion to continue

Zynga recently entered into an agreement with Peak Games. The company wants to continue to embrace poker, solitaire, and the “casual card-based games on mobile” franchises. Gibeau also wants to continue to work within the crossover between casual games and social casino.

WPT, comparatively, made some significant changes of its own coming into the new year.

Starting it all off were the changes at the World Poker Tour’s Legends of Poker tournament, namely WPT joining forces with PokerCentral, some lineup changes, and new faces on the Royal Flush Crew.

The World Poker Tour also announced its WPT Tournament of Champions Jan. 29. Along with the rest of its Season XVI schedule, the WPT announced the new final table home at the Luxor Hotel and Casino Esports Arena Las Vegas and the premiere of the Bobby Baldwin Classic, which will take place at Aria Casino.

Photo by Pe3k / Shutterstock.com

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Katie Callahan

About

Katie Callahan is a freelance journalist, blogger and copywriter who covers everything from poker, business, education and politics to construction, startups and cybersecurity.