Tuesday, November 30, 2004

The9 commits $74m for WoW; World of Warcraft, The9, Vivendi Universal

From DMasia.com: The9 commits $74m for WoW

"Chinese online gaming company The9 has disclosed that it will commit $74.1m on Blizzard's 3D MMORPG World of Warcraft (WoW). The9 is understood to have paid an initial non-refundable licence fee of $3.0m to Blizzard's parent company Vivendi Universal in February this year. The9 has also guaranteed approximately $51.3m in royalties, consisting of quarterly payments from $1.6m to $3.7m over a four year period. The company has further promised to spend $13m for marketing and promotions of WoW, apart from $6.8m for certain events before the game's launch. Vivendi will receive 22 per cent of the face value of sold WoW pre-paid cards sold as royalties. "

WoW already a huge success in S Korea
From The Korea Times: Foreign Online Games Hit Korean Market Hard

"Blizzard Entertainment's Korean affiliate said Monday the World of Warcraft (WoW), its latest offspring, broke the user record in less than a month after its official beta services began Nov. 12.
The company said WoW eclipsed the concurrent user record in the massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), but declined to specify the number.
Experts predict the figure of concurrent users would reach up to 160,000 in consideration of its 55 game servers, which outnumbers the most famous homegrown Lineage series." Read more

Comments from an industry insider (CEO, Red Mushroom, a Beijing-based online game studio) on the the9/WoW deal.

"The9's deal for World of Warcraft
They have to get the IPO off to pay Viverdi, otherwise they are going to have liquidity issues.
This is like the deals AOL cut in the late 90s with DrKoop.com and PurchasePro.
US3M upfront
US13M in marketing over the deal
US51.3m in guaranteed royalty payments
US6.8m linked to certain events, which have not yet occurred, prior to the commercial launch of WoW in China
At least US67m guaranteed, if not more!!" Read more


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