As China’s gaming companies continue to struggle at home, they’re looking for solutions overseas.
The country’s gaming studios are stepping up efforts to expand abroad after a regulatory crackdown led to a slump in the domestic market, experts and industry executives said at ChinaJoy, China’s biggest gaming convention, that concluded in Shanghai this week.
In the first half of this year, sales of China’s self-developed games in the overseas market rose 20.2% year-on-year to $5.6 billion, according to a report released by the China Game Publishers Association, the country’s official gaming association. That growth rate is higher than the 15.4% recorded in the domestic market.
China’s gaming industry is the world’s largest, boasting some 620 million players — almost double the entire U.S. population. But last year, Beijing froze approvals for new titles for 10 months in a bid to address what it viewed as problematic levels of game addiction among young people.
While that freeze is now thawing, the policy blasted a hole in industry revenue and prompted studios to seek revenue streams in overseas market. Deng Hui, gaming industry sales director for Google China, said at ChinaJoy that 18 Chinese gaming companies netted annual revenue in overseas markets exceeding 500 million yuan ($71 million) last year, up from just three companies in 2015.
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Contact reporter Tang Ziyi (firstname.lastname@example.org)