DeNA Acquires Punch Entertainment Vietnam

By Azam Khan 

Tokyo based mobile social-gaming giant DeNA announced a plan of acquisition for Punch Entertainment Vietnam, a subsidiary of California-based Punch Entertainment Inc.  As part of the acquisition, Punch Entertainment Vietnam will bring engineering talent that will support to scale Mobage, the offspring of DeNA and ngmoco. More after the jump.

DeNA has been at the forefront of expansion in the Asian mobile/social space, announcing plans to expand in Singapore and a plan of building partnerships with other developers in Southeast Asia.  With the addition of 50 staff to Mobage, DeNA is situating themselves nicely to produce quality social games to launch them worldwide.

“Punch Entertainment Vietnam is an excellent addition to DeNA’s first party game development team with its proven track record of developing cross-platform social games,” remarked the President of DeNA, Isao Moriyasu. “We believe the acquisition will significantly accelerate DeNA‘s game development and deliver high-quality social games for the Mobage platform. The acquisition also underscores our commitment to support the game developers’ community in Vietnam.”

Obtaining market share has been a clear goal of DeNA.  At SocialTimes we covered DeNA’s partnership with Yahoo! Japan last year – a deal that allowed DeNA to amass a market share of 90 million Japanese users.  With access to such a large number of customers, DeNA has been able to focus on engineering innovative games in addition to their platform. Such a strong customer base will undoubtedly trickle over to the American market soon enough.  Available on both PC and mobile, Mobage’s cross-platform reach will pave the path for future western development and its access to the East, or so it seems.

DeNA reported strong profits for its seventh quarter of earnings.  For the three-month period ending June 30th, DeNA’s net sales totaled 34.65 billion yen ($452.3 million) with a net earning of 9.46 billion yen ($123.4 million), up 45 percent.  With over 90 million users on Mobage, DeNA plans to accumulate record profits despite competition from Beijing-based PapayaMobile and GREE’s Openfeint.  Openfeint is a dominating force on the iOS platform but has yet to show its colors on Android.  Facebook’s future launch of HTML5 could shake the floor a bit yet gamers may be more inclined to use a network with users they don’t know in real life yet have common interests. It will be interesting to see how this space pans out.