Zynga Confirms Unoh Acquisition

Zynga just officially confirmed their buy of Tokyo-based startup Unoh , which we reported on yesterday. Japanese business publication The Nikkei estimated the price at several billion yen. When contacted, Zynga representatives declined to comment on financial details.

The Unoh offices in Tokyo will be the base of Zynga Japan’s mobile initiatives, a joint venture between Zynga and the SoftBank Group which recently invested $150 million into the social gaming company.

Former Unoh CEO Shintaro Yamada will helm Zynga’s foray into the Japanese social gaming market. Zynga has yet to confirm a reported $150 million investment by Google. Its most recent press release below:



SAN FRANCISCO and TOKYO – Aug. 5, 2010 – Zynga today announced that it has acquired Tokyo-based Unoh, one of Japan’s leading social games companies.  Unoh will be part of the foundation of Zynga Japan’s mobile product efforts, which will be a joint venture between SoftBank Group and Zynga, accelerating Zynga Japan’s entry into the Japanese social gaming market.

Unoh is one of Japan’s pioneering social game companies, founded in 2001, with top hits Machitsuku!, Band Yarouyo!, and Kaizoku Chronicle.  In addition to maintaining Unoh’s games on mixi, Mobage-town, and GREE, Zynga Japan will also localize Zynga games and develop new games targeted at the Japanese market.

“Zynga is delighted to welcome the Unoh team, one of the pioneer Japanese social game developers, to the Zynga family,” said Mark Pincus, CEO and Founder, Zynga.  “They have a great track record of producing innovative, successful games and are a perfect complement to the top-notch team we have already begun to assemble in Japan.”

“We’re very excited to join Zynga to help extend its reach to Japanese consumers,” said Shintaro Yamada, founder and CEO, Unoh.  “We’re looking forward to being an integral part of Zynga Japan’s leadership and growth, and are happy to support bringing the best social games to Japan’s cutting edge mobile and web technologies.”

Yamada will help lead Zynga Japan’s mobile efforts.

About Zynga Japan

Zynga Japan is a joint venture between SoftBank Group and Zynga to develop, distribute and support social games in Japan. It plans to bring together the worldwide leader in social gaming and the mobile technology visionary of Japan.

About SoftBank

SoftBank is a leading technology company connecting consumers through its broadband infrastructure, fixed-line telecommunications, and mobile communications services.  SoftBank has invested in overseas companies with high potential to provide next generation services using the internet, including Oak Pacific Interactive (which operates China’s largest SNS site), and Ustream, Inc. (which is the operator of the Ustream.TV website), a broadcast platform offering live video distribution service via the Internet (video streaming service). By leveraging this investment in Zynga and through its other efforts, SoftBank continuously aims to generate synergies among various content and services within its group. For more information, visit http://www.softbank.co.jp/en/

About Zynga
Zynga is the world’s largest social game developer. More than 230 million monthly active users play its games.  Zynga’s games include FarmVille, Treasure Isle, Zynga Poker, Mafia Wars, YoVille, Café World, FishVille, PetVille and FrontierVille.  Zynga games are available on Facebook, MySpace and the iPhone.  Through Zynga.org, Zynga players have raised over $3 million for world social causes.  Zynga is headquartered in Potrero Hill in San Francisco.  For more information, visit www.Zynga.com or www.Zynga.org.