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Sulake Oy
Native name
Sulake Oy
Company typePrivate
IndustrySocial networking
Video games
FounderSampo Karjalainen
Aapo Kyrölä
HeadquartersHelsinki, Finland
Area served
11 countries[2]
Key people
Jyrki Arjanne
(CEO) (2017–present)
ProductsHabbo (2000–present)
VMK (2005–08)
Mini Friday (2006–10)
IRC-Galleria (2007–11)
Bobba Bar (2009–11)
Lost Monkey (2011–12)
Niko (2012–12)
Hotel Hideaway (2018–present)
Revenue78,700,000 US$ (2011)
OwnerAzerion (100%)
Number of employees
52 (December 2015)

Sulake Oy (Finnish pronunciation: [ˈsulɑke]) is a Finnish video game company primarily known for the creation and development of Habbo and Hotel Hideaway games.


Sulake's original pixelated logo (2000–2003)

In its early days, Sulake developed and experimented with an open source Java based GNU called FUSE Light, an alternative to Macromedia's Shockwave. The key difference between the two technologies was that FUSE Light was designed to run on any operating system, while Shockwave was limited to just macOS and Microsoft Windows. This technology was first demonstrated on Sulake's Mobiles Disco, but it soon came to use on the beta versions of Habbo.[3]

In March 2011, Sulake reported that revenue was up more than 20 percent over 2009, resulting in sales of €56.2 million ($78.7 million).[4] Sulake's EBITDA in 2010 totaled €5.4 million ($7.6 million, 9.5 percent of revenue) and thus significantly improved from the previous year (€0.6 or $0.8 million). Net profit was €1.6 million ($2.3 million). Sulake has also been playing an active role in assisting the police in investigations connected to the theft of online furniture.[5]

In September 2011, Sulake announced Paul LaFontaine as new CEO as the original management team left the company.[6]

In February 2012, it was announced that Sulake will be consolidating some of its manual processes and local operations.[7] In showing the door to 25% of their workforce, Sulake will also close all of their 11 country offices according to the report by Finnish publication[8]

In June 2012, Sulake received negative press for ongoing sexual behavior allegations on their most successful website, Habbo. Channel 4 News identified that Sulake was allowing users to post pornographic and violent messages - despite the fact that Habbo is targeted at young teenagers.[9][10] On 13 June 2012, one of the main shareholders, 3i, which held 16 per cent of shares, declared it was pulling out of Sulake shares alongside other investors including Balderton Capital.[11]

In October 2012, it was announced that Sulake would be implementing a second wave of job cuts. A maximum of 60 out of the 90 jobs will go. Negotiations with employees began on 5 November 2012.[12]

In December 2012, it was announced that CEO Paul LaFontaine would be leaving his role after fifteen months.[13]

In January 2013, Sulake announced that Markku Ignatius would replace LaFontaine as acting CEO.[14]

In February 2013, telecommunications company Elisa announced that it was buying Sulake.[10] By the end of the month it will become the biggest shareholder with 85% of the shares.[15]

In April 2013, Antti-Jussi Suominen became the CEO of Sulake.[16] He left his post in January 2017 to join banking startup Holvi.[17]

On 17 May 2018, Elisa finalized the sale of 60% of the shares in Sulake Oy to the Dutch company Orange Games. The value of the deal was not disclosed.[18] Orange Games later merged with the AdTech platform Improve Digital and became known as Azerion.[19] Azerion remains majority stakeholder in Sulake with Elisa remaining a minority stakeholder.

In January 2021, it was reported that Azerion negotiated with Elisa and bought the remaining shares of Sulake. They are now the owners of Sulake Oy.[20]


  1. ^ "Studio Profile: Sulake". Edge. Future plc. 17 March 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  2. ^ "Sulake: Habbo". Sulake Oy.
  3. ^ "FUSE Light". Sulake. Archived from the original on 2002-08-02. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
  4. ^ Habbo Hotel’s Parent Company Reports Record Year
  5. ^ Virtual thieves caught in Habbo Hotel Finland
  6. ^ Sulake CEO Timo Soininen Steps Down (Archived 30 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine)
  7. ^ Sulake Consolidation ( Archived 13 September 2012 at
  8. ^ "Suomalainen Sulake vetäytyy maailmalta, irtisanoo tuntuvasti –". Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  9. ^ "What is happening in Habbo Hotel? - Channel 4 News". 2012-08-14. Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  10. ^ a b Wauters, Robin (7 February 2013). "Habbo makers Sulake acquired by Finnish telecom firm Elisa after child sex scandal and CEO switch". The Next Web. Archived from the original on 15 October 2016.
  11. ^ Internet. "Habbo Hotel investor pulls out over pornographic content claims". Telegraph. Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  12. ^ Anderson, Greg (2012-10-29). "Breaking: Sulake To Begin Talks To Reduce Workforce By Up To 2/3". Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  13. ^ "Paulwalla Departing | Behind the Pixels". 2012-12-31. Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  14. ^ "LaFontaine steps down. Markku Ignatius appointed as an acting CEO". Sulake. 2013-01-02. Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  15. ^ "Kaikki tiedotteet - Tiedotteet - Elisa Oyj". Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  16. ^ "Ignatius completes interim period and steps down as CEO; Antti-Jussi Suominen to head Sulake business from 1 April 2013 onwards". Sulake. 2013-03-13. Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  17. ^ "Holvi announces Antti-Jussi Suominen as new CEO". Finextra. 2016-11-09. Retrieved 2016-11-09.
  18. ^ "Teleoperaattori Elisa myy enemmistöosuutensa kuuluisan Habbo-verkkopelin kehittäneestä Sulakkeesta". 2018-05-17. Retrieved 2018-05-18.
  19. ^ "Improve Digital gaat op in Azerion".
  20. ^ "Azerion fully acquires Habbo Hotel developer Sulake". Retrieved 2021-05-14.