Lots of eyebrows shot upward this week on the news that Microsoft would spend $2.5 billion to buy Mojang, a little Swedish company that happens to be behind the big game franchise Minecraft. And maybe they should have.
Digi-Capital‘s analysis of the deal suggests Microsoft spent at least twice as much for Mojang compared with other one-hit-wonder game companies. Just take a peek at their chart showing ratios of price to sales, and profits to sales, for Mojang and some competitors.
And, Digi-Capital observed, having Minecraft on Microsoft’s mobile devices, tablets, game consoles and Windows-based PCs might pull a few customers in for the hardware, but not $2.5 billion worth of hardware.
The straight business prospects are further complicated because Minecraft uses a throwback business model: you pay several bucks up front to buy it on a platform and you’re done. By contrast, most of the hot mobile games these days…