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Japan-Update

Game developer Gree eyes 150% profit growth in 2 years

Tokyo-based company looks abroad to expand fan base

TOKYO -- Japanese mobile game maker Gree will try to put more popular titles in the hands of international audiences as it targets group operating profit of 20 billion yen ($183 million) for the year ending in June 2019, up two and a half times from last fiscal year.

Gree will provide support for other languages such as English and Chinese, seeking to have markets outside Japan account for around 25% of the game business' sales, compared with about 10% now. Overseas expansion in mobile gaming will lift group sales 50% to 100 billion yen over the targeted period, said Jin Akiyama, a senior vice president.

Profits in the video game industry tend to ebb and flow with hit titles. Akiyama stressed that Gree will work to control costs by streamlining development. "We want to maintain a certain level of profitability by using existing development systems," he said.

Beyond gaming, the company hopes to increase advertising revenue from a loss-making fashion video website.

Group operating profit for the July-September quarter is expected to drop around 40% on the year to 1.5 billion yen due to higher marketing costs. Gree has not disclosed earnings forecasts for the current fiscal year ending in June 2018, but it appears likely to see profit growth thanks to a solid showing by the game business.

(Nikkei)

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