The company behind the biggest triple-A game on the market has purchased the company behind the biggest mobile game on the market. Activision, a publisher whose portfolio includes Call of Duty among other hits, has purchased King Digital Entertainment for $5.9 billion.
The company behind Candy Crush Saga and all the sagas as a result had their IPO launch on Wednesday. While King managed to raise $500 million for the company with the share issuance, it was a painful day for King. The company’s stock dropped over 15% in price on its first day of trading.
The move to trademark such a common word was met with controversy in the gaming industry as many felt that King was trying to kill any competition. However, King’s move has nothing to do with a change of heart about trademarking candy but how they’re going about defending their candy trademark.
King Digital, the company behind Candy Crush Saga, filed an application with the SEC for an Initial Public Offering of shares on the New York Stock Exchange.
Last month, it came to light that King, the makers behind the wildly popular Candy Crush Saga mobile game, had filed trademark applications on the words “candy” and “saga.” Not only are they trying to trademark common as dirt words, they were trying to enforce their trademarks by going after other games, including the not at all similar The Banner Saga game by Stoic Studio.
At the end of January, King CEO Riccardo Zacconi issued an open letter saying that King wasn’t intent on eliminating any and all competition using their trademarks. Instead, King said that their trademark policy “is to protect our IP and to also respect the IP of others.”
Unfortunately, that isn’t how it’s actually working in real life. King is using loopholes in trademark law as part of a legal battle with CandySwipe, a game that preceded Candy Crush Saga by two years, and outspend developer Albert Ransom out of the mobile app business.