Tencent is the most important online game company in China based on it having the largest market share. The company released its Q4 financial report and these are the summarized statistics:
Q4 Revenue: RMB16.97 billion, increased by 40% YOY.
Q4 Net profit: RMB 3.93 billion, increased by 13%.
2013 total revenue: RMB 60.44 billion, increased by 38% YOY.
2013 total net profit: RMB 15.56 billion, increased by 22% YOY.
Q4 revenue from mobile game: RMB 600 million.
Q4 MMO ARPU: RMB 140-300.
Q4 Casual game ARPU: RMB 80-190.
We will publish our 2014 Chinese PC Online & Console Games Market Report in April and Tencent is an important component of the PC online and mobile markets in China.
On top of that, Tencent has introduced to developers its advantages in multi-channel and multi-platform. This time, to publish Shen Zhi Ren, Tencent maneuvered several platforms such as Ying Yong Bao, Shou You Bao, QQ Game Lobby, QQ Browser, QZone, etc., and also cross promoted the game by various methods such as giving away free “beans” in Dou Di Zhu.
Niko Partners at GDC
Since Tencent is so important for China, its presence at GDC was very important to western developers trying to launch games there, particularly mobile games. Tencent had a booth at GDC where staffers answered questions on the topic of how to launch a game with Tencent in China. The answer was that there are two tiers of service available to them, the top tier (WeChat, QQ Mobile, and maybe others) and the open tier (Ying Yong Bao app store).
Tencent is extremely selective about the games it will accept for the top tier platforms. But any interesting game can be distributed through Ying Yong Bao. The selective features for top tier games include things such as art style appealing to Chinese gamers, simplicity of gameplay, they type of gameplay for single player or offline player mode, and more (we do not have the details). Also, a game can start in the open tier and then move up to the top tier if it proves to be successful.
As we have seen the regulations for the mobile game industry evolve and mature in China, we can see an echo of more regulations in other entertainment sectors too. SARFT is cracking down on China’s online video portals and now sites will be required to have all of their streaming video viewed by a government-approved censor going forward.
ZTE9 FunBox just became the first console available in China since the ban was lifted, after the launch on March 19th. FunBox claims to be the world’s fastest home entertainment console for gaming, video-chatting, and online video. It will be sold online and be available in 12 colors. The product is offered by a JV of domestic companies ZTE and the9 (9 City).
Check out Niko’s latest post on Forbes.com as we follow the trend of publicly traded Chinese PC online game operators broaching the mobile industry.