Makers behind the hit franchise PUBG, and the upcoming Battlegrounds Mobile India, Krafton is going for a $5 billion IPO. The Korean company will be selling 10 million shares between 458,000 won ($404) to 557,000 won ($491).
The IPO will be the biggest Korean IPO till now, the current record being held by Coupang Inc, which raised $4.6 billion in the NYSE in March. In terms of the domestic record, Samsung Life Insurance Co had the largest listing at $4.3 billion in 2010.
The exact pricing is expected to be decided in July.
Krafton saw major success after its game Player Unknown’s Battleground saw more than 60 million sales for PC and over 1 billion downloads, excluding mainland China, for the mobile version of the same game. The company is backed by Chinese gaming and social media giant Tencent. Tencent is the second-largest stakeholder in the Korean company, controlling 15.35 percent of the shares.
The company reported revenues of 1.67 trillion won ($1.4 billion) for the last financial year on the back of its standout game. The company is looking to diversify, branching out into web-based cartoons, movies, and animation, and developing deep learning, AI business model targeting consumers.
"Krafton has a lot of cash and is raising additional billions through the IPO," said Choi Jin-sung, analyst at Cape Investment & Securities. "There aren’t many great options in the market to buy a gaming developer. I expect it’s more likely for Krafton to pursue M&As in the entertainment industry."
Krafton is planning to publish its own games to the global market after it had to be an unintended victim of geopolitical repercussions. India had banned PUBG Mobile due to the connections with Tencent, during rising tensions with China.
India had become a major hub of users for the game, with over 175 million downloads. Krafton decided to commit $100 million to relaunch the game in the Indian market in a different avatar — Battlegrounds Mobile India.