Zynga snaps up social browser Flock

Laurie Segall, staff reporter


NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Social gaming giant Zynga has acquired Flock, an early pioneer in creating a social Web browser.

"With over a quarter of a billion users, Zynga has captured the imagination of the world," Flock CEO Shawn Hardin wrote in a blog post announcing the deal. "We're thrilled to be going to a platform that shares our passion for combining great user experience and technology."

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Launched in 2005, Flock raised around $30 million in funding, but it struggled to gain visibility. It has a cult user base of 10 million, but was upstaged earlier this year by the splashy launch of rival RockMelt, which shares essentially the same vision for a social browser.

Flock integrates services like YouTube, Digg, Facebook, and Twitter into the browser, along with baked-in tools for editing blogs and uploading photos.

The real catalyst for the deal may be Flock's talent, not its product. As the startup scene continues to explode, companies are hungry for skilled engineers, designers and entrepreneurs. Google and Facebook reguarly buy fledgling companies because they want the employees behind them.

Flock is based in Menlo Park, Calif., not far from Zynga's San Francisco headquarters.

"Our team will help Zynga in achieving their goal of building the most fun, social games available to anyone, anytime -- on any platform," Hardin wrote.  To top of page

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