On January 31st, The New York Times announced it had purchased Wordle for a price “in the low seven figures.” This comes as the company aims to reach 10 million digital subscriptions by 2025.
“The Times remains focused on becoming the essential subscription for every English-speaking person seeking to understand and engage with the world,” reads a company statement. “New York Times Games are a key part of that strategy.”
The New York Times acquired the game from its creator Josh Wardle. According to The Times, the game will initially remain free to both new and existing players.
Wordle is a spelling game that has quickly risen to global popularity since it was launched in October. Now, the game boasts over a million daily players.
The Profit‘s Take:
This acquisition didn’t make as many waves as Microsoft x Activision-Blizzard or Sony x Bungie, but it’s still noteworthy. It sounds like New York Times’ games have a larger audience than the actual publication. Four months from release to acquisition is pretty impressive. If this is such a phenomenon, I’m curious why other hyper casual mobile game developers didn’t go after this. This would have been an easy pickup for a Zynga or a King. I respect Josh Wardle a lot for this. He’s getting life-changing money for something he launched quite recently. I totally understand why he sold out here. If they spent $1-$3 million on this, you don’t have to see a ton of growth or retention to justify this purchase.
(All information was provided by The New York Times)
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