Netmarble Games is expected to make a rebound in sales globally thanks to K-pop sensation BTS as the firm’s new game “BTS World” is expected to be released within the year.
The game utilizes the intellectual property (IP) of the members of the boy band using more than 100 video clips and 10,000 photo shoots. A user nurtures a BTS member in the game, and the game’s soundtrack will be sung by the band, according to the company.
The iconic seven-member boy band, also known as Bangtan Boys, was named “Top Social Artist” for the second year in a row at the Billboard Music Awards held at Las Vegas on May 21, beating out Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, Demi Lovato and Shawn Mendes.
The boy band also debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with its new album “Love Yourself: Tear,” May 27, becoming the first Korean group ever to reach the top of the Billboard main albums chart.
The boy group’s unprecedented splash in the unforgiving U.S. market is meaningful in that the members have become influential figures in IP globally. Netmarble is expected to benefit greatly from this at a time when the firm is seeking to target the global market.
Get Booking your Asia Artist Awards ticket package
Netmarble underperformed during the first quarter as there were no new games released. The firm posted sales of 507.5 billion won ($475 million) with an operating profit of 74.2 billion won. Sales and operating profit decreased by 26.2 percent and 62.9 percent, respectively, year-on-year.
Recommended Korea Tour Packages
But brokerages expect a rebound of the game firm as the boy band’s continuous popularity is highly likely to guarantee the success of “BTS World” in the overseas market.
“There is a great possibility that BTS’s global popularity will lead to a hit of the game,” said Lee Chang-young, an analyst from Yuanta Securities Korea.
Hi Investment & Securities analyst Kim Min-jeong also said expectations are high for the success of “BTS World.”
“As the game exclusively offers more than 100 video clips and 10,000 photos as well as sound sources, Netmarble is expected to produce sales in various areas around the world,” said Kim.
Netmarble has also appeared to become a beneficiary in the stock market amid growing popularity of BTS as the firm invested 201.4 billion won in Big Hit Entertainment, the agency behind the K-pop sensation, in April. This is equal to 445,882 shares, or a 25.71 percent stake of the agency, making the game company its second-largest shareholder.
At the time, a Netmarble official said, “Cooperation with rapidly growing Big Hit Entertainment and utilization of K-pop will contribute to the advance of Netmarble Games into the global game market.”
Source : THE KOREA TIMES