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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

April 29, 2011 at 9:00 AM

PopCap buys SF social studio ZipZap

As it gears up for a public stock offering, Seattle’s PopCap Games is simultaneously bulking up.

The company today announced the acquisition of ZipZapPlay, a San Francisco studio known for its Facebook games.

ZipZap will remain in San Francisco, led by founders Curt Bererton and Mathilde Pignol. It has 17 employees who produced games such as “Baking Life.”

Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.

“Adding ZipZapPlay’s strong design and development team to our rapidly-growing social games group is a big move for us,” PopCap co-founder and chief creative officer, Jason Kapalka, said in the release. “ZipZapPlay is a great cultural fit: a truly creative company that lives and breathes in this space. And their next game is very innovative and exciting – we believe it has the potential to be a step forward in the evolution of social gaming.”

PopCap plans to have four or five games available on Facebook by the end of 2011, it said in the release. Its first social games, “Bejeweled Blitz” and “Zuma Blitz,” draw about 5 million daily active users. PopCap said this makes it the third-largest Facebook game developer after Zynga and Electronic Arts.

This is PopCap’s first acquisition since 2007, when it bought Vancouver, B.C.-based SpinTop Games and Chicago-based Retro64.

In this apt picture provided by PopCap, ZipZap’s Bererton is being gobbled up by a dragon couch at his office in San Francisco:

CurtInDragon.jpg

Comments | Topics: Facebook, Games & entertainment, PopCap Games

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