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Venturebeat has a story out on 2010 and how game fundings and acquisitions developed compared to 2009. Growth was spectacular and in terms of percentages, the size of the fundings and acquisitions rose by 130% compared to 2009. Thus in 2009 the overall size of the market in these terms was $819 million. The data is provided by IHS and is said to cover international markets. According to IHS, the numbers cover funding and acquisitions activity in all areas of gaming except mobile gaming.

According to IHS, there were 123 fundings and 87 acquisitions in 2010. Overall, there was 20-24 acquisitions every quarter up from 49 acquisitions for the whole of 2009. This data could be dramatically different if mobile gaming was included, which is perhaps the fastest evolving market these days.

According to Steve Bailey, games analyst at IHS, two key trends fueled the funding and acquisitions in 2010. “First, it was driven by burgeoning activity in the fast-evolving sphere of online gaming, with particular emphasis on social network gaming. Second, movement in funding and acquisitions also has ramped up between Western markets and entities in Asia, centered likewise on the growth to be found in various aspects of online gaming.”

Some of the largest funding events of the year are that of DST closing $300 million from the Chinese online gaming house Tencent. DST has since then invested this money into the likes of Zynga and Facebook. Zynga was also amongst the largest receivers of financing. In 2010 it received $147 million from Japanese Softbank. The funding will be used to grow Zynga bigger in the Asian market as a gaming operator.

It looks like gaming has definitely taken its position as one of the key sectors in the entertainment industry.

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