VIDEO

Candy Crush maker King Digital loses US$850m on NY Stock Exchange opening

A mascot dressed as a character from the mobile game "Candy Crush Saga" walks the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during the IPO of Mobile game maker King Digital Entertainment Plc March 26, 2014. King Digital, the maker of the wildly popular vi
A mascot dressed as a character from the mobile game "Candy Crush Saga" walks the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during the IPO of Mobile game maker King Digital Entertainment Plc March 26, 2014. King Digital, the maker of the wildly popular video game Candy Crush, fell below its initial public offering (IPO) price in initial trading on the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday, March 26, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

NEW YORK (AFP) - King Digital, the maker of the wildly popular video game Candy Crush, fell below its initial public offering (IPO) price in initial trading on the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday.

Despite an overall rise in the market, King opened at US$20.50 a share, below the company's IPO price of US$22.50.

The shares fell as low as US$19.51 before rebounding to US$20.48, 9 per cent below the IPO subscription price.

King raised US$500 million (S$634.4 million) on Tuesday from the sale of 22.2 million shares, and the shares trade under the ticker "KING".

Established in 2002, King's business has soared in the last two years thanks to the spectacular popularity of Candy Crush Saga, which boasts some 97 million players worldwide.

King makes money from players buying hints and other help to aid their climb through some 500 levels of the Tetris-like game.

But some analysts have questioned King's staying power on the back of a game whose popularity could wane over time as users tire of it.

The company's follow-up games have not attained the same level of popularity.

"The only way to find a hit is to launch many games," King Digital chief executive Riccardo Zacconi told CNBC, explaining the company's strategy.

"It's a question of time," he added.

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