Video game star Keywords Studios snaps up Wicked Witch and Waste Creative in bid to ramp up games-as-a-service support
- Wicked Witch works for major publishers like Microsoft and Riot Games
- Waste Creative is forecast to generate around £6m worth of revenue in the year
Keywords Studios has snapped up marketing agency Waste Creative and Australia-based development studio Wicked Witch Software.
The addition of London-based Waste Creative will enable Keywords, which provides player community management for mobile video game creators like Supercell, Nintendo and Riot Games, to address rising client demand for games-as-a-service support.
Wicked Witch works for major publishers like Microsoft and Riot Games in games and graphic application development. The deal is Keyword’s second in Australia this year.
Deals: Keywords Studios has snapped up marketing agency Waste Creative and Australia-based development studio Wicked Witch Software
Waste Creative is forecast to generate around £6million worth of revenue in the year ending 30 June 2022, while Wicked Witch is also expected to bring in £6millon, Keywords said.
Keywords is paying up to £9.8million for Waste, comprising £2.2million worth of upfront cash and shares, plus future payments tied to business performance over the next three years.
It is paying £6.5million in cash to buy Wicked Witch. Keywords expects Tantalus and Wicked Witch will continue to collaborate closely on certain large projects.
Bertrand Bodson, chief executive of Keywords, said: ‘We are delighted to have further strengthened the Keywords group by adding such talented teams in London and Melbourne.
‘We are really looking forward to working with Waste Creative’s highly skilled and experienced team.
‘Games as a service marketing support with a focus on community growth and fan retention are areas of increasing importance to our clients and Waste Creative will help us meet that growing demand and provide them with extensive and more integrated marketing solutions.’
Video game sales have surged since the start of the pandemic as people have looked to occupy the extra hours they have spent indoors following the imposition of lockdown restrictions.
Many of Keywords’ customers have been beneficiaries of this upsurge, including Xbox designer Microsoft, FIFA video game maker Electronic Arts, and Japanese game makers Konami and Sega.
In its most recent half-year results, Keywords’ underlying revenues climbed 37 per cent to €228.3million and pre-tax profits almost doubled to €21.9million.
Shares in AIM-listed Dublin-based Keywords are up 1.13 per cent or 31.09p to 2,783.09p. A year ago the group’s share price was 2,740.00p.