News - PA - June 27, 2022

Korean game publishers leverage on metaverse for ad revenue

South Korean game developers are expanding to digital advertisement market through their metaverse game titles to add new revenue source during new game hiatus period.

According to multiple sources from the information technology (IT) industry on Thursday, Korean game developer Pearl Abyss Corp. is readying to enter the country’s digital advertisement market with its new metaverse-based game DokeV.

The company would offer to display corporate logos on the buildings including stores and billboards in DokeV metaverse world in partnership with its corporate clients, according to the company, although the scheme is still in planning stage.

The idea is based on last year’s experiment. Names of Korea Tourism Organization, Mnet, OliveYoung, and CJ CGV appeared on “ROCKSTAR,” the official music video of DokeV, released late last year.

DokeV – a creature-collecting open world action adventure game unveiled in 2019 – is a solid growth engine for Pearl Abyss along with “Crimson Desert.” It has gained much spotlight after it pre-released a video last year that showed realistic character movements and background. The game is also based on an actual world in Korea, raising expectations for next-generation metaverse platform.

According to a recent report on metaverse industry outlook released by Kiwoom Securities, long-term profit value of Pearl Abyss’s ad business using DokeV is projected to reach 79 billion won ($60.7 million) in 2023, 163 billion won in 2024, and 341 billion won in 2026 to account for 2.9 percent of Korea’s digital ad market.

The country’s total digital ad market is estimated at 8.5 trillion won this year and is forecast to reach 11.8 trillion won in 2026.

Overseas metaverse game leader Roblox has already been testing ad business on expectation that its metaverse ads would account for more than 1 percent in the entire digital ad market, said Kim Jin-koo, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities.

Another Korean game developer Com2uS is also seeking to make an inroad into the digital ad market with its new metaverse office Com2Verse.

In April, Com2uS set up Com2Verse, a joint entity with its subsidiaries WYSIWYG Studios and NP. The metaverse platform Com2Verse will house the headquarters first later this year followed by its partners Hana Financial Group, Kyowon Group, and Kyobo Book Centre.

The partnering companies will be able to display their signboards, open up a virtual business in Com2Verse to which other offices will move for economic activities, said an unnamed official from Com2uS. The company is still reviewing a relevant ad business model.

By Jin Young-tae and Lee Eun-joo

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