DeNa Fires Back At Zynga With A $27.5 Million Social Gaming Venture Fund

DeNa Avatars

Expect even more deal activity in the social gaming sector. DeNa, one of Japan’s biggest social gaming players, is launching a new $27.5 million fund which it says it will use to invest in social game startups. The move comes as Zynga — which has been busily buying up social game startups — is encroaching on DeNa’s own home turf. Zynga has reportedly raised $147 million in a new funding round from Softbank, one of the largest telecom operators in Japan and the main shareholder in Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) Japan. DeNa had recently announced a deal of its own with Yahoo Japan to jointly launch a new social game site.

DeNa’s press announcement is filled with comparisons to Zynga. For instance, DeNa says it’s on track to reach $820 million in revenue this year, compared to Zynga’s expected $600 million and it also says that, unlike Zynga — which makes the vast majority of its revenue from its titles on Facebook — it has built up its business by distributing its games “direct to consumer, via operators, via PC partners like Yahoo and through app platforms like Apple’s iTunes.”

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