Zynga is raising $180 million in a private round led by Digital Sky Technologies, the Russian company that just bought a chunk of Facebook, the NYT says.
Other investors include Tiger Global, Institutional Venture Partners, and Andreessen Horowitz.
A few points in addition to what the NYT is saying (link below):
- This is a huge amount of money for a company that is making money
- The valuation is likely at least $1.5 billion and possibly upwards of $3 billion
- Casual gaming is a very real business
- We have to fix our IPO market
DST, by the way, is partially owned by Alisher Usmanov, a Russian billionaire who spent six years sitting in an Uzbek jail for fraud and embezzlement. He says he was jailed for “political reasons,” which is entirely possible. Usmanov lost a boatload of money in last year’s market crash, but he has likely made most of it back. You should definitely check out this picture of him.
Digital Sky Technologies, or D.S.T., an investment firm with offices in Moscow and London, is leading a group that is buying a $180 million stake in Zynga, a fast-growing San Francisco company whose online games, like FarmVille, Café World and Mafia Wars, are extremely popular on Facebook.