GigaMedia (GIGM) announced that it has completed the acquisition of the FunTown online game portal, the world's largest online MahJong game site by revenue and leading Asian casual game site.
"Giga's highly strategic, highly accretive acquisition of FunTown sets the stage for an exciting 2006: we now have combined East and West — the leading Asian casual game portal and world number one MahJong site joins our traditional gaming and poker software strength in Europe," stated GigaMedia CEO Arthur Wang. "We also enter the high-growth, high-margin casual game business as a strong market leader."
MahJong is a traditional Asian game where four players draw tiles (like playing cards) to make sets of three-of-a-kind and straights. As with poker, MahJong is normally played for real money or just for fun.
GigaMedia plans to offer FunTown's market leading MahJong software to online gaming operators around the world. With overseas Asians and other game enthusiasts as the target market, MahJong is expected to create lucrative growth opportunities for international gaming operators.
GigaMedia also enters the rapidly growing casual game business in Asia as a market leader, with FunTown's base of 4 million registered users as its foundation.
On an unaudited, management account basis, FunTown is expected to generate approximately US$5.1 million in net income in 2005, all from its play-for-fun casual gaming platform. Looking ahead, GigaMedia expects platform improvements, new games and cost savings from synergies with GigaMedia's broadband operations to drive 20 percent to 30 percent growth in FunTown's play-for-fun business in 2006.