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THQ sells off mobile subsidiary

By Alec Meer

Tue 08 Feb 2011 11:57am GMT / 6:57am EST / 3:57am PST

Advertising firm 24MAS acquires THQ Wireless, but publisher to "continue focusing" on smartphones

Publisher THQ has sold its mobile gaming division to advertising and distribution firm 24MAS.

Founded in 2001, THQ Wireless has released a number of licensed games and applications for feature and smartphones, using IPs such as Star Wars, The Simpsons, Spongebob Squarepants and WWE.

Over the last nine months of 2010, THQ Wireless contributed $4.8m, just 0.9 per cent, of the publisher's revenues - down from $9.2 million / 1.3 per cent for the same period in 2009.

The division now belongs to Stockholm firm 24MAS, which claims to offer advertising and 'premium applications' to customers in over 80 countries via its own platform.

THQ claim that this does not signal a move out of mobile, however. "This agreement and our ongoing relationship with 24MAS will enable us to continue focusing on cutting edge games for Apple and emerging smartphone platforms" said Ian Curran, THQ's executive vice president of Global Publishing, "while enjoying the distribution services of 24MAS on wireless carrier platforms.

"The combination of advertising and paid content solutions also enables us to maximize THQ's intellectual property in emerging markets."

The purchase means 24MAS now boats HQs in the US, Europe, Asia-Pacific and Latin America.

Observed 24MAS CEO Tero Turunen, "The acquisition and ongoing partnership with THQ means 24MAS will have an unparalleled reach to many millions of potential customers globally, both via/for application and content distribution, as well as mobile advertising solutions.

"THQ Wireless' operations provide a value-add in terms of reach, services and technology, combined with proven management, operational excellence and revenue growth potential."

The price paid for THQ Wireless was not disclosed.

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