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Hasbro Signs Agreement with PopCap

Zacks Equity Research

In order to enhance the brand’s gaming experiences, toy maker Hasbro Inc. (HAS) recently signed a licensing agreement with Electronic Arts Inc.’s (EA) operating unit PopCap Games. Financial terms and conditions of the deal have not been disclosed yet.

Under the terms of the agreement, Hasbro will launch a new line of physical gaming products based on PopCap’s popular virtual game brands. Hasbro will be engaged in designing, manufacturing and marketing of these analog games.

PopCap, a Seattle-based game developing company, is one of the largest social gaming companies accredited with over 150 million games that are played on various platforms of Facebook, Inc. (FB), Renren Inc. (RENN), Google Inc. (GOOG), and Apple Inc. (AAPL). Electronic Arts bought PopCap Games for an estimated $1.3 billion in 2011.

The company’s two physical gaming products, BEJEWELED and BEJEWELED FRENZY will be available from spring 2013. These games will be based on PopCap’s renowned game series, Bejeweled. With the purchase of BEJEWELED game, the online players will have the access to download a virtual game named Bejeweled 3 for free.

Hasbro’s management believes that this deal will enhance its coverage in the analog gaming arena and restructure its portfolio of gaming products.

Hasbro has been highly active on gaming deals. In 2012, it launched a new line of gaming products in U.S., U.K., Australia and Canada in association with the world’s largest social game developer - Zynga, Inc. (ZNGA).

Given Hasbro’s strong product line up, including core brands as well as key licensed brands and lucrative product associations, the company remains well positioned for future growth.

Hasbro, which competes with Mattel Inc. (MAT) and JAKKS Pacific Inc. (JAKK), retains a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). We currently have a long-term Neutral recommendation for Hasbro.

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