Friday, December 09, 2005

More on EA's Acquisition of Jamdat Mobile

A number of article and posts about EA's acquisition of Jamdat Mobile. Here are some with quotes from analysts. In the New York Times, Evan Wilson at Pacific Crest Securities said, Electronic Arts "has become successful making games that don't necessarily serve the hard-core gamer, and the mobile phone is the latest platform to serve that market."

Michael Pachter at Wedbush Morgan Securities, said, "It's a fair price," and noted "Jamdat could give Electronic Arts expertise in the mobile games business, while Electronic Arts could provide its library of games, many of them sports titles, to be developed for handsets."

Mike Hickey at Janco Partners forecasted "Electronic Arts would finish its year with about $20 million in sales from mobile games, but he noted that the company recently dropped that projection from $24 million."

Over at the Orlando Sentinel, Evan Wilson at Pacific Crest Securities said, "Electronic Arts is getting the premier development organization. It's a good deal. The valuation is at the high end, but Electronic Arts is putting its cash to good use."

The Los Angeles Times quotes Wedbush Morgan Securities analyst Michael Pachter, who said "The deal should be complementary insofar as the guy with content buys the guy with know-how. The synergy is something Jamdat couldn't create on its own."

IDC analyst Schelley Olhava added, "EA has dipped its toe in the wireless gaming waters and so now they're making an acquisition, which will really vault them into the market. They've made it very clear they see wireless gaming as a long-term growth area for them."

Lastly, Joseph Laszlo blogs at the Jupiter Analyst Weblogs that while "the mobile-pure-play games publishers, like Jamdat, Gameloft, Sorrent, and Digital Bridges have had the playing field pretty much to themselves. Established publishers in the PC/console games sector have bided their time, waiting for a "real" market to develop." For EA, the time must be now and Laszlo opines:

Great news (and the obvious exit strategy) for Jamdat, although Jupiter believes that cellphone games remain a relatively small part of total games industry revenues for the next five years. One likely outcome of integrating Jamdat and EA will be more rapid release of game brands/titles across console, PC, and cellphone platforms...right now the cellphone version of a PC or console game generally comes sometime after the release of the primary game. It'll be interesting to see how EA experiments with using a cellphone port of a title as a complement to, or perhaps even a preview of, a title about to be released on another platform.