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Social gaming company signs five-year contract, committing to Facebook's virtual currency
Playdom, the social gaming startup sold to Disney earlier this week, has signed a five-year contract for the exclusive use of Facebook Credits, Facebook's virtual currency, in all Playdom games.
Demonstrating clearly that Credits matter greatly to the social networking service going forward, Facebook has of late focused on fostering deep relationships with its most popular third-party developers, often ensuring that Facebook Credits play a major role in their services. The revenue could be important for the social networking site, since Facebook takes a 30% cut from all Credits income.
As early as May, social gaming startup Zynga entered a five-year relationship with Facebook that somehow involved the expansion of Facebook Credits in Zynga's games. While today's news says Playdom has committed exclusively to the virtual currency, Zynga may have had a little more leverage to use against Facebook in forging their deal. That is, Zynga did not have had to commit to just one system.
Crowdstar was the first to commit exclusively, however, when in late June the company promised to use only Facebook Credits for a full five years. Others, like LOLapps, RockYou, Wooga, and some smaller app developers, have also decided to only use Facebook's own virtual currency.
Earlier this week, Disney announced that it had agreed to pay $563.2 million up-front for Playdom, the largest social gaming publisher on MySpace and the third-largest on Facebook, continuing the entertainment company's aggressive push into mobile and social gaming.
With today's announcement, we can safely say that Facebook Credits have the backing of Disney itself, a huge win for Facebook in its efforts to make Credits a widely used world-class virtual currency platform.
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Zynga is the largest social gaming company with 8.5 million daily users and 45 million monthly users. Zynga’s games are available on Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Hi5, Friendster, Yahoo! and the iPhone, and include Texas Hold’Em Poker, Mafia Wars, YoVille, Vampires, Street Racing, Scramble and Word Twist. The company is funded by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, IVP, Union Square Ventures, Foundry Group, Avalon Ventures, Pilot Group, Reid Hoffman and Peter Thiel. Zynga is headquartered at the Chip Factory in San Francisco. For more information, please visit www.zynga.com.
Joined Vator onRockYou is a leading provider of applications and widgets on the web. RockYou widgets include photo slideshows, glitter text, customized Facebook applications and voicemail accessories that are simple to use and enable people to frequently refresh their online style. Founded in 2006, RockYou has over 35 million users, serving over 180 million widget views per day in more than 200 countries. RockYou applications are customized for easy integration across all social networks including Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Friendster, Tagged and hi5.