Social games to be a 300 billion yen market within 2 to 3 years – Interview with Mobage town
written by Tsuruaki Yukawa
Bloger in Chief of TechWave
There were mistakes in translation. It was reported that the socail game market will be 3 trilion yen market, but the correct number is 300 bilion yen. Our apology.
Mobage Town is a mobile social game platform that has continued to succeed since it’s initial launch. Takeshi Otsuka of DeNA, which operates the popular platform, said that membership numbers and page views “are continuing to grow, exceeding our expectation.” I had an interview with the manager of DeNA at the Infinity Venture Summit about their “Cross-Device, Cross-Borders” strategy for Mobage Town. (Check out the video below. 30 minutes)
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”We thought that if we can reach 100 billion yen in Japan’s social game market in 2 to 3 years, it’d be great, but since it’s grown far beyond our expectation, it looks like we’ll reach the 100 billion yen mark by the end of this year. Now our goal is to bring it to a 200 to 300 billion yen market within 2 to 3 years,” said Isao Moriyasu, the manager in charg of the Mobage Town business.
Mobage Town’s projection is that perhaps it will grow even more with a synergy between Yahoo!’s PC-based users and Mobage Town’s users. That is the biggest target of the cross-device strategy.
However, the question is can Yahoo!’s adult users become part of Mobage Town’s teenaged community.
”When it’s a social game, it’s easy to start communication even for our users in their 20s and 30s. Since we started offering social games, users in their 30s communicate more actively than teenagers,” said Mr. Moriyasu.
Incidentally, Mobage’s Mr. Moriyasu and Yahoo! Mobile’s senior executive manager, Masataka Matsumoto, had a small chat at the IVS six months ago that was the catalyst for the “Yahoo! Mobage” tie-up.
In addition to their cross-platform strategy, they are pursuing a cross-boarder strategy. As the cross-boarder strategy, they’ve financed local social networking services in the Chinese and English language markets, but now they’re putting the most effort in an application called “MiniNation” that is aimed at international iPhone users. On top of being a free application, they said that you can play popular games such as Bandit Nation on it. The business model is to charge for items. International iPhone users haven’t necessarily flock to the app yet, though. Mobage Town people said, it hasn’t attracted many users because they haven’t promoted the appts yet.
In connection with Apple starting the GameCenter social game service on the iPhone, for the time being they are watching carefully how the Apple’s project turns out.