The deal will greatly increase EA's casual offerings.
Electronic Arts is buying PopCap Games, the developer of major casual successes such as Plants vs. Zombies and Bejeweled.
At a minimum, EA will pay $650 million in cash and $100 million in EA stock to PopCap. Based on PopCap's performance over the next two years, EA could pay another $550 million. If they earn over $343 million within that timeframe, EA will pay the entire amount, pushing the total for the deal to $1.3 billion. If PopCap fails to reach that threshold, the bonus payment is prorated unless the developer's income is less than $91 million, at which point EA will not have to pay any additional money beyond the initial $750 million. Last year, PopCap reported approximate revenue of $100 million.
PopCap has a strong presence in the worlds of mobile gaming, browser games, and Facebook applications. Beyond Plants vs. Zombies and Bejeweled the company has also produced the successful Bookworm series, Diner Dash, and Zuma, as well as card games and game show tie-ins.
Several of PopCap's games have come to Nintendo platforms, including Plants vs. Zombies (DS and DSiWare), Peggle: Dual Shot (DS), Bejeweled Twist (DS, DSiWare), Bejeweled 2 (WiiWare), Bookworm (DS, DSiWare), and more.
EA has been working to expand its casual and mobile gaming offerings. In 2007, they formed EA Casual Entertainment, which houses their casual offerings including the pogo.com, which offers subscription enhanced browser-based online games, including some of PopCap's. EA Casual Entertainment is also responsible for several Wii titles including Hasbro Family Game Night and Boom Blox.