November 3, 2010

EA Announces Five Year Agreement With Facebook

Videogame maker Electronic Arts (EA) announced Tuesday that it had reached a five-year deal with Facebook that would make the social networking site's virtual currency the exclusive payment method for purchasing virtual items in EA games.

The Redwood City, Calif.-based game maker called the agreement a "strategic relationship", under which "Facebook Credits" would be the sole currency in EA games.

EA said it would receive 70 percent of the revenue from Facebook Credits, with Facebook getting the remaining 30 percent.

"Since gaming has emerged as the most popular category of applications on Facebook, the natural next step is for EA to broaden its relationship with Facebook and its 500 million users," said EA Interactive senior vice president and general manager Barry Cottle in a statement.

"We are pleased to enter into this long-term partnership with EA to make it easier for people to purchase virtual goods across some of the most popular games on Facebook," said Dan Rose, Facebook's vice president of partnerships and platform marketing.

More than 200 million people play games on Facebook each month, with EA's "Pet Society" and Playfish's "Restaurant City" among the top 10 games on the site.  EA acquired London-based Playfish, the second-largest supplier of Facebook games, last year for $400 million dollars.

"Playfish has a great reputation for building high-quality games on Facebook, and we look forward to working even more closely with them and the larger team at EA," Rose said.

EA said it also plans to bring Monopoly, Pogo, Scrabble and Boggle to Facebook.

Shares of EA's stock rose 28 cents on Tuesday, closing at $16.20.


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