supercell

Tencent left out as China approves the release of 80 new video games

Posted by | Activision, Asia, China, Entertainment, Gaming, riot, supercell, TC, Tencent, Tencent Holdings, WeChat | No Comments

Chinese internet giant Tencent has been excluded from the first batch of video game license approvals issued by the state-run government since March.

China regulators approved Saturday the released of 80 online video games after a months-long freeze, Reuters first reported. None of the approved titles listed on the approval list were from Tencent Holdings, the world’s largest gaming company.

Licenses are usually granted on a first come, first serve basis in order of when studios file their applications, several game developers told TechCrunch. There are at least 7,000 titles in the waiting list, among which only 3,000 may receive the official licenses in 2019, China’s 21st Century Business Herald reported citing experts. Given the small chance of making it to the first batch, it’s unsurprising the country’s two largest game publishers Tencent and NetEase were absent.

The controlled and gradual unfreezing process is in line with a senior official’s announcement on December 21. While the Chinese gaming regulator is trying its best to greenlight titles as soon as possible, there is a huge number of applications in the pipeline, the official said. Without licenses, studios cannot legally monetize their titles in China. The hiatus in approval has slashed earnings in the world’s largest gaming market, which posted a 5.4 percent year-over-year growth in the first half of 2018, the slowest rate in the last ten years according to a report by Beijing-based research firm GPC and China’s official gaming association CNG.

Tencent is best known as the company behind WeChat, a popular messaging platform in China. But much of its revenue comes from gaming. Even with a recent decline in gaming revenue, the company has a thriving business that is majority owner of several companies including Activision, Grinding Gears Games, Riot and Supercell. In 2012, the company took a 40 percent stake in Epic Games, maker of Fortnite. Tencent also has alliances or publishing deals with other video gaming companies such as Square Enix, makers of Tomb Raider. 

The ban on new video game titles in China has affected Tencent’s bottom line. The company reported revenue from gaming fell 4 percent in the third quarter due to the prolonged freeze on licenses. At the time, Tencent claimed it had 15 games with monetization approval in its pipeline. To combat pressure in its consumer-facing gaming business, the Chinese giant launched a major reorganization in October to focus more on enterprise-related initiatives such as cloud services and maps. Founder and CEO Pony Ma said at the time the strategic repositioning would prepare Tencent for the next 20 years of operation.

“In the second stage, we aspire to enable our partners in different industries to better connect with consumers via an expanding, open and connected ecosystem,” stated Ma.

China tightened restrictions in 2018 to combat games that are deemed illegal, immoral, low-quality or have a negative social impact such as those that make children addicted or near-sighted. This means studios, regardless of size, need to weigh new guidelines in their production and user interaction. Tencent placed its own restrictions on gaming in what appeared to be an attempt to assuage regulators. The company has expanded its age verification system, an effort aimed at curbing use of young players, and placed limits on daily play.

Update (December 30, 10:00 am, GMT+8): Adds context on China’s gaming industry and Tencent.

Powered by WPeMatico

Supercell acquires 62% of London’s Space Ape Games for $55.8M

Posted by | Apps, Europe, Gaming, mobile games, social games, Space Ape Games, supercell, TC | No Comments

 Some consolidation is afoot in the world of gaming. Today, Space Ape Games — a London social and mobile games studio founded by alums from Playfish, Mind Candy and EA — announced that Supercell has acquired 62 percent of the company for $55.8 million, as part of a long-term strategic partnership. The deal gives Space Ape a total equity valuation of $90 million. Space… Read More

Powered by WPeMatico

Tencent reportedly eyes majority stake in Supercell, plans tie-ups with Publicis, LVMH

Posted by | advertising, Advertising Tech, Asia, Europe, Gaming, lvmh, Mobile, mobile games, Publicis, Social, Softbank, supercell, TC, Tencent | No Comments

Screen Shot 2016-02-08 at 12.24.48 PM China’s Internet giant Tencent has been expanding its international reach in areas like games and advertising, and as part of that, the company is picking up its dealmaking in Europe. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the owner of the popular WeChat messaging platform is in early talks to buy a majority stake in Supercell — the mobile gaming phenomenon based out of… Read More

Powered by WPeMatico

SoftBank Ups Its Stake In Supercell To 73% As Accel Cashes Out Of The Mobile Gaming Giant

Posted by | Apps, Asia, clash of clans, Europe, Fundings & Exits, Gaming, hay day, Mobile, mobile gaming, Softbank, supercell, TC, Venture Capital | No Comments

clash of clans Some ownership changes afoot at Supercell, the mobile gaming giant out of Finland behind blockbuster titles like Clash of Clans and Hay Day. Japan’s SoftBank has upped its stake in the startup to 73.2 percent, after buying an additional 22.7 percent of shares from existing external investors, with VC Accel exiting the company completely in the process. SoftBank says that Supercell… Read More

Powered by WPeMatico