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Report: Google Ventures Backs Ngmoco

Report: Google Ventures Backs Ngmoco

August 12, 2010 | By Leigh Alexander

August 12, 2010 | By Leigh Alexander
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Google's investments arm has reportedly put an estimated $3-5 million in funding into profitable iOS game developer Ngmoco, a move that may be linked to recent steps by Google itself in the direction of the mobile and social gaming space.

Ngmoco, creator of popular iPhone and iPad titles like We Farm, We Rule and Touch Pets: Dogs, could be valued in the arena of $100 million, according to a report in TechCrunch, which says Google pitched in to the company's latest funding round. The company closed an earlier round in February to the tune of $25 million.

It's important to note, as the report stresses, that Google Ventures, the investor this time around, maintains it's completely separate from Google itself -- the latter is the one which has recently made big social gaming strides with the acquisition of Jambool and its Social Gold monetization platform, plus app and game developer Slide.

But analysts see a clear gain for many of Google's initiatives, like Google Checkout and its Android platform, in the mobile gaming space in particular. The search giant also stands to capture substantial ad revenues if it can build a rival to Facebook, as numerous unconfirmed reports and speculation suggest is the company's ultimate aim.

And although Ngmoco has traditionally been a developer on iOS primarily, many mobile developers see increasing opportunities on Android phones as the platform gains rapid adoption. TechCrunch's report notes that Ngmoco rival SGN began to offer some of its game on Android -- and in June closed a funding round led by Tomorrow Ventures, a firm headed by Google CEO Eric Schmidt.


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