TheGamingEconomy’s Daily Digest brings you the prevalent business stories in gaming. In today’s news: Tencent becomes largest shareholder in Marvelous; We Are Nations launches Nations Ventures; and IGDA launches global indie collective.
Tencent becomes largest shareholder in Marvelous
Tencent Holdings Ltd. is set to become the largest individual shareholder in Marvelous Inc., with its wholly-owned subsidiary Image Frame Investment Limited purchasing a 20% stake in the Japanese developer-publisher for approximately JP¥7bn (£53m). As well as the issuance of 8.62 million shares by Marvelous to Image Frame Investment, current shareholders Amuse Capital and Nakayama Hayao will also divest themselves of 2.83 million and 708,000 shares respectively, with the set price of JP¥576 (£4.39) per share. The investment will reportedly be used to add features to Marvelous’ existing titles, developing new IP, and expanding internationally. The companies have previously collaborated on the studio’s Bokujou Monogatari (Story of Seasons) series, with Tencent currently developing a smartphone title based on the franchise.
Speaking to Bloomberg, Ace Research Institute analyst Hideki Yasuda commented, “Tencent’s reason for the investment is probably to learn how to make console games from Japanese companies, one of the last frontiers for the Chinese tech company’s game business. The investment will help Marvelous ride through the period of global economic uncertainty, and release more of its domestically-popular titles to the Western market.”
We Are Nations launches Nations Ventures
Australian esports merchandising firm We Are Nations, Inc has announced the launch of a dedicated investment vehicle, dubbed Nations Ventures, which will be used to fund non-competing early-stage esports companies from the third quarter of 2020 onwards. While the exact level of available funding has not been confirmed, the fund will be primarily owned by We Are Nations, with additional support from existing investors and new backers.
In a statement, We Are Nations CEO Patrick Mahoney commented, “Nations Ventures seemed like a smart next step for We Are Nations. Like I’m sure everyone else has been doing since the start of the COVID-19 crisis, I’ve spent a lot more time on calls talking to people a bit more outside my normal orbit than usual. These connections have been great and have opened my eyes to a bunch of ideas that We Are Nations would love to be part of.”
IGDA launches Global Indie Collective
The International Game Developers Association (IGDA) has announced that its indie Special Interest Group (SIG) has launched the Global Indie Collective, consisting of 33 industry veterans who will provide independent studios with advice on matters ranging from the operational impact of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, to strategic planning and partnership management. The group is chaired by Mark Stanley (Playful Studios), with members including Debbie Bestwick (Team 17); Chris Charla (Xbox); Clive Downie (Unity); and Bob Loya (Activision).
Speaking to GameDaily.biz, IGDA Executive Director Renee Gittins commented on the reasoning for the Collective’s formation, “As an indie developer, it can be difficult to navigate all of the challenges a development team faces. Large game teams are formed of many specialists, including lawyers, business developers, and marketing professionals. As an indie developer, you often have to wear many of these hats and do not have a degree or as much background in all of these roles. Indies also have to navigate publishing processes on their own, which can be a daunting challenge for those who have not dealt with them before.”