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Neowiz Games Eyes China's Mobile Game Market
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South Korea's fourth-largest online game maker Neowiz Games Co. said Monday it is seeking to tap into China's mobile game sector as the world's No. 2 economy experiences rapid growth in the mobile device market.

Since its launch in June 2008, Neowiz Games' Chinese subsidiary has been focusing on developing and distributing online PC games.

Eliot Shin, head of subsidiary Neowiz China, expected it will take two to three years to see China grow into a full-fledged mobile gaming market. "Revenues from the mobile games will soon take over revenues from PC online games," he said.

Shin said there still are many challenges for a foreign game maker to survive in China, largely coming from a different culture and government regulations.

However, the Chinese mobile game market remains attractive as China has recently grown into the world's largest smartphone market, surpassing the U.S., he said.

According to industry researcher Canalys Research, China represented 22 percent of global smartphone shipments in the first quarter of this year, while the U.S. accounted for 16 percent.

Neowiz China is aiming to become the bridge between China and overseas countries, Shin added.

"We distribute great mobile content from outstanding overseas developers in China. On the other side, we distribute great Chinese mobile games in the South Korean market," he said.

The Shanghai-based company has already published two Chinese mobile games -- Haypi Kingdom and War 2 Victory -- in South Korea, Neowiz China officials said.

Figures released by the Chinese Ministry of Culture showed China's mobile game market grew 51.2 percent on-year to 3.87 billion yuan (US$606 million) last year.

The number of users of single-player mobile games grew 46 percent to 51 million people, while the number of multiplayer mobile game users rose 352 percent to 11.3 million. The single-player mobile game market exceeded 3 billion yuan, while the multiplayer mobile game market reached 790 million yuan, the data showed.

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Source: Yonhap News (July 30, 2012)  

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