GamesBeat

Angry Birds are coming to a Starbucks near you

Rovio Entertainment, the company behind Angry Birds, is in talks with Starbucks to bring the game to life in Starbucks’ retail locations.

The gaming company is considering partnering with Starbucks to sell virtual goods and set up electronic leaderboards in the ubiquitous coffee shops. The extra visibility could lead to more players and fans — an important step in the company’s continued growth leading up to an initial public offering.

A similar partnership was reached over the summer with Barnes & Noble; the stores displayed leaderboards and added augmented reality gaming elements with a feature called “magic places.”

Rovio senior vice president Wibe Wagemans told Bloomberg in an interview that the in-store promotions are an attempt to acquire new players and sell a wider range of Angry Birds-related products, especially in light of the company’s anticipated IPO sometime in the next few years. Wagemans said the company is already selling 1 million Angry Birds stuffed animals every month, and being able to increase the types and amount of merchandise offered might significantly impact Rovio’s bottom line.

Right now, Angry Birds gear comes in a plethora of shapes and sizes. Of course, there are the aforementioned Angry Birds plushies (always good for a little “pummeling therapy” in the VentureBeat writers’ lounge) and T-shirts. You can buy Angry Birds mobile accessories, Halloween costumes and myriad cheap plastic items of questionable licensing and origin.

Rovio is also working on an Angry Birds feature-length film.

Currently, the game has seen more than 350 million downloads. Mobile players are in the game for more than 300 million minutes each day collectively.

Rovio wrapped up a $42 million fundraising round in March and is reportedly working on a new round with a $1.2 billion valuation.


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