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Chat app Kakao's games business lands $130M from Tencent and others ahead of IPO

Chat app Kakao's games business lands $130M from Tencent and others ahead of IPO
From TechCrunch - February 14, 2018

Koreas dominant messaging firm Kakao is back raising funds after its games business, a standalone unit that is headed for an IPO, pulled in $130 million (140 billion KRW) from Tencent and a range of other strategic investors.

The company, which owns Koreas top mobile messaging app and one of the countrys largest internet portals, operates a sprawl of business that include taxi-hailing, deliveries, comics, payments and more. It has adopted the spin-out approach favored by Chinese tech firms for a number of these entities, with Kakao Taxifor exampleraising more than $400 million from outside investors last year.

Recently,Kakao itself completed a placement in Singaporewhich netted the parent firm $1 billion for international growth, and now it is the turn of its games business.

Kakao Games pulled the capital in from Tencentthe $500 billion Chinese tech giant that was an early backer of Kakao itselfvia two subsidiaries and Koreas Netmarble Games, which is backed by Tencent. Other that participated in the round include game development studioActozsoft,Bluehole Studiothe producer behind PlayerUnknowns hit gameBattlegrounds and an existing Kakao Games partnerand M&A fundPremier Growth.

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