How Facebook And The iPhone App Store Transformed PopCap's $100 Million Gaming Business

PopCap mobile revenueThat’s the iOS App Store in blue, driving all the growth at PopCap mobile. More charts →

Photo: PopCap

PopCap, the gaming company behind hits like “Bejeweled” and “Plants vs. Zombies,” reached $100 million in revenue last year, up about 25% from 2009.We met with PopCap cofounder John Vechey and CEO David Roberts for an update this morning.

While desktop gaming is still the company’s biggest source of revenue, mobile is a close second and online and console gaming have both grown significantly at the company in the past few years.

Two important growth platforms for PopCap have been the Facebook gaming platform, where it’s one of the most popular game developers, and Apple’s iPhone App Store, where PopCap was the only company to have two games in the “top grossing apps” list last year.

We’ve borrowed a few charts from PopCap’s presentation deck to illustrate how these platforms have helped transform the casual gaming business.

First, a look at PopCap's overall growth: Up about 25% in 2010 past $100 million

Once by far a desktop PC gaming company, it's now about 1/3 Desktop, 1/3 Mobile, and 1/3 Online and Console

Facebook has been a big growth driver Online. Here, PopCap boasts about its Facebook engagement: More than a third of its Bejeweled Blitz monthly users come back every day.

PopCap has been a mobile gaming company basically forever, but recent growth has been fuelled by Apple's iOS App Store (blue). PopCap's execs are hopeful that Android can eventually become a big market for paid games, but so far, it isn't happening.

PopCap's next move is to grow in Asia, where it has hired a big team to make new games for Asian audiences with its existing franchises. Here's how Asian gaming company stocks have demolished the NASDAQ and U.S. Media stocks since World of Warcraft launched.

Bigger picture, here's a forecast of the opportunity for gaming companies like PopCap: Big growth expected in Mobile and Social gaming.

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