Electronic Arts has announced that it is to acquire PopCap, of casual online and mobile gaming fame, for £470 million.

The deal, which will be finalised in August, sees EA paying $650 million (£407 million) cash plus $100 million in stocks – not quite the $1 billion deal that was rumoured, but it's not far off.

EA's CEO John Riccitiello explained that the company will use PopCap to help it reach its digital targets.

Zuma!

"EA and PopCap are a compelling combination. PopCap's great studio talent and powerful IP add to EA's momentum and accelerate our drive towards a $1bn digital business," he said.

"EA's global studio and publishing network will help PopCap rapidly expand their business to more digital devices, more countries, and more channels."

With the rise of apps and social gaming, more and more traditional games developers are seeing the potential of the casual gaming market.

PopCap is a the jewel in the crown of the casual gaming world, with hit games including Plants v Zombies, Zuma and Bejeweled, which has sold more than 50 million copies alone.

Via The Guardian