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White & Case Advises Zynga Inc. on Its Agreement to Acquire 100 Percent of Istanbul-based Peak for US$1.8 Billion

Global law firm White & Case and GKC Partners have advised Zynga Inc., a global leader in interactive entertainment, on the US$1.8 billion acquisition of Istanbul-based Peak Oyun Yazilim ve Pazarlama, A.S. The transaction is the largest acquisition of a start-up in Turkey to date and makes Peak Turkey’s first “unicorn.”  

“We are thrilled to work with Zynga on this landmark Turkish technology acquisition,” said White & Case partner Asli Basgoz, who co-led the Firm’s deal team. “This is Zynga’s largest acquisition to date and its third acquisition in Turkey. Our Turkish M&A practice, named 'Turkey M&A Legal Adviser of the Year' by the Mergermarket European M&A Awards in 2019, continues to go from strength to strength in a market that continues to offer opportunities for investors in fast growth and technology companies.”

Partner Bijal Vakil, who also co-led the transaction, added: “We are pleased that our close relationship with Zynga allowed us to advise on this landmark transaction to help them bring the world closer together through mobile gaming.” 

Zynga will acquire 100 percent of Peak for US$1.8 billion, comprised of US$900 million in cash and US$900 million of Zynga common stock. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2020, subject to regulatory approvals. 

With this acquisition, Frank Gibeau, CEO of Zynga, has stated that Zynga is expanding its live services portfolio to eight forever franchises, meaningfully increasing its global audience base and adding to its exciting new game pipeline.

Peak, one of the most globally successful mobile gaming companies, has two forever franchises, Toon Blast and Toy Blast, that have consistently ranked in the top 10 and top 20 US grossing iPhone games for more than two years, respectively.   

“Our technology expertise, combined with our strength in managing complex, global transactions, allowed us to operate seamlessly across jurisdictions on Zynga’s behalf so they could execute this significant acquisition,” said partner Emmie Jones, who also co-led the deal team.

White & Case has a professional association with Istanbul-based GKC Partners. The White & Case team that advised on the transaction included partners Bijal Vakil (Silicon Valley), Asli Basgoz (Istanbul), Emmie Jones, Will Smith, Lindsey Canning, Tim Hickman and Mark Israel (London); Rebecca Farrington (Washington, DC), Justus Herrlinger (Hamburg); David Johansen (New York); counsel Elodie Gal (New York), and associates Elena Ruggiu and Lily Teh (London), and local partner Lars Petersen (Hamburg). The GKC Partners team included partner Emre Ozsar, competition advisor Sezin Elçin Cengiz, tax consultant Hakan Eraslan and associates Asli Gulum, Sezgin Bas, Elif Berberoglu, Selin Kaledelen, and Damla Cay (all in Istanbul). 

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