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 Angry Birds  Creator Rovio Lands $42M In Funding

Angry Birds Creator Rovio Lands $42M In Funding

March 10, 2011 | By Kris Graft

March 10, 2011 | By Kris Graft
More: Console/PC

Finnish Angry Birds developer Rovio said Thursday it secured $42 million in a Series A funding round that will fuel "strategic expansion" of the company.

Rovio said Angry Birds is played by 40 million monthly active users. The game released in December 2009 on Apple's App Store, and is now available on various platforms including iOS, Android, PlayStation 3/PSP and PC.

Co-leading the new round of funding was venture capital firm Accel Partners, which has worked with major companies including Facebook, Groupon and AdMob.

Also heading up the funding was Atomico Ventures, created by Skype co-founder Niklas Zennstrom, who will be joining Rovio's board.

A statement from Espoo, Finland-based Rovio said the funding will "transform Rovio’s growth, allowing it to increase its reach internationally." The 50-person company plans on extending its business across platforms including mobile and social media.

This week, the company confirmed to Gamasutra that it plans on releasing a Facebook version of Angry Birds this May, adding various social features to the popular physics-based game.

Rovio also recently showed intent to focus more on consoles with the hiring of Petri Jarvilehto, co-founder of Alan Wake developer Remedy Entertainment, who is now SVP of console development at the studio. The company said it is developing Angry Birds for "all major consoles" for later this year.

Rovio said it intends to increase its efforts in merchandising and media production partnerships. The company recently announced a cross-promotional deal with the bird-centric animated film Rio, and revealed production of an Angry Birds animated series.

Sales of Angry Birds plush toys have surpassed 2 million in sales, Rovio said, and 40 percent of new iOS customers have purchased the Mighty Eagle DLC for the game.

"With Angry Birds, we have successfully launched not only a strong new brand, but also a whole new entertainment franchise," Rovio co-founder and CEO Mikael Hed in a statement. "Angry Birds will continue to grow, and we aim to create more similar success stories."

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