King launches Japanese base to seize bigger piece of $5 billion smartphone gaming market

Tokyo HQ unveiled

King launches Japanese base to seize bigger piece of $5 billion smartphone gaming market

King has opened an office in the heart of Tokyo to shore up its presence in Japan.

The new Minato office - dubbed "King Japan" is led by the former CMO of mobile social game studio gloops, Ken Edahiro.

At current, Edahiro is the General Manager of the three-person King Japan studio - but he's looking to hire more staff including a CTO and, more intriguingly, a game producer.

King Japan is located in Tokyo's Minato ward - which also hosts Sony and Toshiba's offices, along with the iconic Tokyo Tower - and is the 10th office for King. It joins King's global network of San Francisco, Seoul, Stockholm, Malmö, Barcelona, Bucharest, Berlin, Malta, and London locations.

Commercial enterprise

The announcement of King Japan comes shortly after King launched its second TV commercial campaign for Candy Crush Saga.

Taking a different angle from the previous campaign which used actress Mikako Tabe, the new ads are darker and more serious – but still rely heavily on star power. In this case, it’s boy band member Junichi Okada and actor Kenichi Endo.

King’s decision to double down on Japan is hardly surprising, given its explosive smartphone gaming market jumped 178 percent in 2013 and is currently estimated to be worth $5.4 billion.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tencent Holdings recently announced that it will publish Candy Crush Saga in China via its WeChat mobile messaging platform.

[source: Serkan Toto]

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Representing the former colonies, Matt keeps the Pocket Gamer news feed updated when sleepy Europeans are sleeping. As a frustrated journalist, diehard gamer and recovering MMO addict, this is pretty much his dream job.