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Pokemon Go boosts Nintendo

News, 12 July 2016
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TOKYO: As mobile game Pokémon Go takes off, Japan-based gaming company Nintendo's share price spiked more than 20% in just one day and brands are looking for ways to tap into the craze.

Mobile games are generating massive revenues for app developers in Asia, but some long established gaming companies which have made their fortune on video and desktop games have struggled to adapt to the new mobile first landscape.

Nintendo's augmented reality game allow users to capture Pokémon in their own surroundings using location tracking. It was launched in Australia, New Zealand and the United States last week and has already climbed to the top of the app rankings, the Wall Street Journal reported.

According to data by SimilarWeb, Pokémon Go is expected to overtake Twitter for daily active users, less than a week after its release.

Several brands in Australia have already reacted to the craze, with supermarket chain Woolworth, for example, posting tips on Facebook on how to catch wild Pokémon in its stores.

The game is a long-hoped hit for Nintendo as the company faces declining console sales. Despite holding several huge game franchises including Pokémon, Super Mario and Donkey Kong, Nintendo has been a late starter in the mobile space, releasing its first game only after pleading from investors following concerns about its mobile gaming strategy.

Pokémon Go is the company's second mobile gaming release and hosts in-app monetisation which is likely to boost the company's fortunes in the future. Nintendo has also added US$7bn in market value since the game was released.

Chinese internet giant Tencent has also bet on the future of mobile gaming, agreeing to buy a majority stake in game maker Supercell for $10.2bn last month.

Supercell, which has a large Asia presence, generated $2.32bn in revenue last year from just four mobile game releases including the hugely popular Clash of Clans.

Data sourced from Wall Street Journal; additional content by Warc staff

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