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Stocks

Candy Crush maker sets price for Wall Street public share offering

The maker of the mobile video game Candy Crush has set the price for its Initial Public Offering on Wall Street. King Digital Entertainment is guaranteed a cool $500 million, the shares having been underwritten.

Dublin-based game developer King Digital Entertainment announced on Tuesday evening that the price of shares being floated on the New York Stock Exchange for the first time would be $22.50 per share (16.30 euros).

The Initial Public Offering (IPO) figure would value the company at about $7.08 billion when it goes public on Wednesday.

King Digital can be sure to pick up $500 million from the sale - even before stocks are floated. JP Morgan, Credit Suisse and BofA Merrill Lynch acted as lead underwriters for the venture, with the sale of 22.22 million shares guaranteed even if there were to be no public demand for the shares.

The shares are being offered by the company itself, selling 15.3 million units, as well as by leading stockholder Apax Ventures, which is selling the rest. A further 3.3 million could be issued by the underwriters to the public, should demand prove strong enough.

King Digital had revenue of $1.88 billion last year, following the success of its lead product, "Candy Crush Saga." The game, featuring a Tetris-like format where players place rows of sweets into lines, boasts some 97 million players globally.

It is played principally on mobile phone and tablet devices and is particularly popular among commuters.

The company said it would use the cash generated as working capital for the company. Established in Sweden in 2002, King Digital has seen business soar in the past two years as a result of the game's success.

rc/jm (AP, AFP)