GREE Says it Will Launch New Global Mobile-Social Gaming Platform Using OpenFeint Next Year

After acquiring OpenFeint for $104 million and then bringing in new leadership to run the company, Japanese gaming company GREE says it will launch an entirely new mobile-social gaming platform next year.

The goal is to combine the best parts of the GREE platform in Japan with those of OpenFeint and built a single network that reaches more than 1 billion Asian and Western users. It’s slated to launch by the middle of next year.

GREE, which originally said it would keep its Japanese platform and its Western-oriented side separate, says it’s not taking cues from rival DeNA in building a unified global gaming network.

“To clarify, this is not a combined platform, it is a new platform leveraging assets from both the GREE and OpenFeint ecosystems,” the company’s senior vice president of marketing an developer relations Eros Resmini tells us. “We will continue with our strategy of creating unique user experiences reflecting regional tastes and preferences.”

He said the new platform will have a common developer API that lets developers target their experiences for different regions with a single technology set. (We don’t have details yet on what developers will have to do in order to be on this new platform. Those will apparently come close to the platform’s launch date.)

GREE recently raised its earnings forecasts for the fiscal year ending in June. It said its net sales would come in at between 130 and 140 billion yen ($1.71 to $1.84 billion) up from an earlier projection of 90 to 100 billion yen ($1.19 to $1.32 billion) and its net income would be about 33 to 39 billion yen ($434.8 to $513.9 million) up from an earlier forecast of 22 to 28 billion yen ($289.9 to $369 million). It didn’t say what led to the higher forecasts.