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Angry Birds creators swoop on animation studio

Pig pummeller dreams of a Disneyesque future

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The creator of casual gaming phenomenon Angry Birds, Rovio Mobile, has swooped on fellow Finnish animation studio Kombo, for an undisclosed mix of cash and stock.

The acquisition follows the successful closure of a round of US$42 million funding in March, which Rovio claimed would be put towards broadcast media opportunities. Kombo will focus its production efforts entirely on Rovio properties.

"We have had a long and fruitful relationship with Kombo in the past. This acquisition is an important step in the execution of our media strategy. We look forward to delighting our fans with more Kombo animations," said Rovio CEO Mikael Hed.

Showing perhaps a patch of hubris, Rovio says it wants to become a digital Disney, and will continue to expand in all areas of entertainment. It has also made no secret that it is on the hunt for more talent in both animated entertainment and application development.

In the US, Rovio announced that it has secured a deal with connected TV box-builder Roku to let Roku customers fling birds at pigs. "Angry Birds is the most popular and fastest growing casual game yet it has been trapped on mobile devices. We believe there's a huge market for games like these on the TV," said Roku founder Anthony Wood.

The Angry Birds franchise has generated over 200 million downloads across all platforms. Speculation has been mounting that the developer is planning for an IPO in the next two years as it expands its cross-platform media development. ®

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