Voodoo SAS’s backers are exploring the sale of a stake in the French mobile game developer, people with knowledge of the matter said.
Shareholders of Voodoo are working with an adviser as they consider selling part or all of their holdings in the company, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. A deal could value the Paris-based firm at more than 1.5 billion euros ($1.6 billion), the people said.
They are gauging interest from potential investors including rival game developers such as Ubisoft Entertainment SA and Zynga Inc., the people said. Deliberations are at an early stage, and there’s no certainty they will lead to a transaction, the people said.
The plan to sell is a rare example of a Europe deal process launching in the middle of the coronavirus-led market rout that’s hampered M&A activity globally. The game industry is one of the few that’s benefited from the crisis, which has confined millions of people across the continent in their homes.
Mobile game downloads globally jumped 23% in March from February, hitting the highest-ever level for a single month, according reports.
to data from analytics firm Sensor Tower Inc. Gross revenue from mobile games rose 7% from the previous month, the data show.
Voodoo sold a stake in 2018 to a Goldman Sachs Group Inc. private equity fund called West Street Capital Partners VII. It said at the time that cofounders Alexandre Yazdi and Laurent Ritter retained a majority holding.
The company, which was started in 2013, makes easy-to-play casual games including “Helix Jump,” “Roller Splat” and “Snake VS Block.” Many are free to download with optional in-game purchases. The company’s games have over 300 million monthly active users and have generated more than 2 billion downloads, according to its website.
Representatives for Voodoo, Goldman, Ubisoft and Zygna declined to comment.