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Candy Crush Saga dev files for IPO, reports half a billion in profits

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

King, the developer of Candy Crush Saga and numerous other Saga titles, filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission today for an initial public offering that could be worth as much as $500 million.

The company is applying to be listed on the New York Stock Exchange with the symbol "KING."

According to the filing, King's top game is Candy Crush Saga, with an average of 93 million daily active users and nearly 1.09 billion games played per day. The publisher's next four highest-performing titles trail far behind: Pet Rescue Saga, Farm Heroes Saga, Papa Pear Saga and Bubble Witch Saga. King's annual profits jumped from $8 million (on sales of $164 million) in 2012 to $568 million (on sales of $1.88 billion) in 2013.

However, King acknowledged in its IPO filing that there is a "high degree of risk" in investing in its stock. A major risk factor is the company's rapid growth: Its employees have more than quadrupled over the past two years, from 144 at the end of 2011 to 665 at the end of 2013. But the most notable issue that analysts have raised is King's lack of diversification: The company noted in its filing that n the fourth quarter of 2013, its top three games generated 95 percent of its total bookings, and Candy Crush Saga alone was responsible for 78 percent of the total.

King hired a chief financial officer, Hope Cochran, last October to assist with managing the company's business. For more on King, check out our report on what the company's "candy" trademark filing really means.