It's one of the biggest, if not the biggest, tech-based IPO that will launch in 2011 and it's happening today. Zynga, the publisher of many popular Facebook-based social networking games such as Farmville, Cityville, Mafia Wars and many more, begins trading today on the NASDAQ stock market in New York City.
Venture Beat reports that Zynga began trading today at $10 a share which is on the high end of predictions. Zynga hopes to raise $1 billion or more by selling a number of its shares. The estimated value of the company based on its stock price is now $8.9 billion. That's a lot but not nearly as much as previous predictions of between $15 billion and $20 billion in value when the company first filed for its IPO in the summer of 2011.
The big question, at least for people who buy and trade stock, will be, "Is Zynga worth buying?" So far reaction has been mixed. Normally, tech-based IPO launches tend to go sky high on the first day but the stock prices go much lower in the days and weeks ahead. However, unlike a lot of tech companies that sometimes don't even generate profits, Zynga has a huge revenue stream and made money even before today's launch.
Zynga says that it currently has 230 million monthly active users playing its various games. While titles like Farmville and Cityville continue to be popular, Zynga sometimes releases a game that doesn't connect to players. That is certainly the case with the recently launched Mafia Wars 2. A sequel to one of Zynga's first games, Mafia Wars 2 has been losing players constantly since launching in mid-October. It currently has 7.3 million players.