Digital Chocolate develops and publishes innovative applications for mobile phones, including games, lifestyle and social networking applications. The company’s CEO and founder, Trip Hawkins, has a notable history in gaming software, having founded and built the seminal games company Electronic Arts. Founded in December 2003, Digital Chocolate is backed by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Sequoia Capital, as well as individual investors, including Bob Pittman, former COO of AOL/Time Warner and founder of MTV.
Sumea was originally founded in 1999 and focuses on creating high quality, innovative and technically superior games for major wireless platforms. Sumea is based in Helsinki, Finland and has some of the world’s leading wireless carriers as customers and partners, including Vodafone, O2, Orange, AT&T Wireless, T-Mobile, and Cingular Wireless. Sumea’s Zoy’s Rescue Mission and Racing Fever games are among the leading games on some of the industry’s most prominent carriers.
“Acquiring Sumea provides Digital Chocolate with strong, established partnerships with major global carriers, broad geographic distribution and an entire catalog of top-rated games,” said Trip Hawkins, CEO of Digital Chocolate.
“Our mission is to enhance the everyday experience for the millions of people on the world’s most ubiquitous computing platform. Sumea’s 24 titles, great carrier relationships and industry leadership get us closer to that goal,” he continued.
“Sumea brings a highly talented management team that has built a profitable and innovative company. They’ve developed and launched some of the most popular games in the world,” said Mark Jacobstein, president and COO of Digital Chocolate. “Digital Chocolate will be global and mobile, and now we’re set to launch in Europe with one of the best organizations on the continent.”
The merged entity will have relationships with over 110 distribution partners in more than 53 countries on five continents. Digital Chocolate plans to retain the Sumea brand for existing Sumea titles and expand the distribution of those titles in the U.S., as well as leverage the existing Sumea channels internationally to support upcoming Digital Chocolate applications.
“At Sumea we are very excited about working with Digital Chocolate and industry veterans like Trip Hawkins toward a common, immediate goal of developing and publishing high quality games that change the way people think about and use their mobile phones.” said Ilkka Paananen, CEO of Sumea. “This merger will also offer increased access to new financial and development resources that will bring greater value to Sumea’s current customers.”