As we expected, Zynga, the force behind the popular Facebook games FarmVille and CityVille, has filed paperwork for its initial public offering. Reports indicate that the move could raise as much as $1 billion for the company that also has developed a lineup of popular mobile games.
Zynga joins a recent wave of tech companies that are going public. In May, the professional networking site LinkedIn completed a highly successful IPO that saw the company earning big money for its pre-IPO investors. The music streaming site Pandora followed LinkedIn’s lead in June by completing its own IPO, which it had initially filed for back in February.
Zynga’s IPO comes at an auspicious time for the gaming company. In February, the Zynga was valued at a whopping $10 billion — more than double its valuation from a year prior. And following an IPO, Zynga’s value could rise as high as $20 billion. For perspective, consider that gaming giant EA’s most recent valuation was placed at around $5 billion.
In its IPO paperwork. Zynga cited its growing user base, currently put at 60 million active users, and its impressive 2010 revenue of $597 million as motivators behind its decision to move forward with a public offering. Zynga’s profitability combined with its legion of fans all but assures that investors will look favorably on the company as it moves into the public realm.