82% of Korean games companies have annual sales of less than US $87,000

The top 10 Korean games companies: market insight from our partners at This Is Game

82% of Korean games companies have annual sales of less than US $87,000

KOCCA (the Korea Creative Content Agency) has announced that Korea's games market exceeded $9.3 billion US dollars in 2015. KOCCA is expected to surpass $9.5 billion in 2016, reports This Is Game

However, most games companies are in fact struggling. Revenue has polarised large games companies and small/medium-sized games companies.

According to the survey of 885 domestic games companies, which was conducted by KOCCA in 2016, 82% of the firms’ yearly revenues were under $86,964.

It tells us that most companies continue to deteriorate while a few companies keep growing. The growth rate of the Korean games market was 0.3% in 2013, 2.6% in 2014 and 7.5% in 2015.

Looking at the revenue of major games companies, it becomes much clearer: in 2015 Nexon, Netmarble Games and NCSoft accounted for 35% of the total revenue.

The figure was expected to increase further this year.

Top 10 By Revenue (2016)
1. Nexon - $1.61 billion
2. Netmarble Games - $1.3 billion
3. NCSoft - $855 million
4. NHN Entertainment - $561 million
5. Smilegate - $522 million
6. Com2us - $377 million
7. Gamevil - $132 million
8. 4:33 - $100 million
9. Sundaytoz - $69.3 million
10. Dev Sisters - $16.96 million
All figures in US Dollars.

Ultimately, if such a phenomenon becomes rampant, small/mid-sized games companies will become smaller, and the emergence of small-sized games companies will be much more difficult.

Many local commentators are worrying that there will be an increase in games focused on financial results rather than fun.

The feeling is that the government needs to work hard to solve the problem, developing balanced growth through improved policy and deregulation.

This insight comes to us from the team at This Is Game, the leading Korean games portal and media partner of You'll see some of our articles on their site occasionally and discover exclusive Korean market insights here from This Is Game writers.

Guest Editorial