Mobile gaming is one of the hottest investment markets right now, and China’s Chukong Technologies isn’t missing out on the action.
The mobile-game publisher, which is responsible for iOS releases like Fishing Joy and making the popular Cocos2D-x development engine, revealed that it raised $50 million in Series D funding. The company raised $33 million in its first three funding rounds, which brings its total funding to date to $83 million. China-focused private-equity fund New Horizon Capital led the round, and previous Chukong investors GGV Capital, Sequoia Capital, Steamboat Ventures, and Northern Light all participated.
Chukong announced that it will use the influx of cash to fund expansions to its mobile-game development and publishing. It also plans to use some of the $50 million toward improving the software tools it uses to make games.
“We welcome the continued support from our existing investors, as well as from New Horizon Capital,” Chukong chief executive Haozhi Chen said in a statement. “Their investment is a strong endorsement of our past achievements and great confidence in our future growth potentials. We look forward to building a more exciting chapter of Chukong Technologies with our strategic investors.”
Chukong generates around $12 million in gross revenue each month, according to the company. Its games have more than one billion play sessions each month, with 63 million monthly active users (MAUs).
The company also created and maintains the Cocos2D-x development engine, which simplifies making games. More than 400,000 developers use Cocos2D-x including Zynga, Gameloft, and Konami. Studios use the engine to build games for iOS, Android, Windows, Mac, and HTML5. While Chukong is building a business making games, it is also finding a much bigger market offering its tools to other game creators.
“With the proliferation of smartphones across China and countries worldwide, we see a significant opportunity not only to publish polished games and entertainment content but also to provide tools for developers to access emerging mobile platforms and overcome challenges caused by device fragmentation,” said Chen. “There is a bigger play here than offering discrete mobile game experiences, and that’s what we’re going after.”
Chukong is also known for handling localization efforts for companies like Disney, Gamevil, and Nexon who want to release their titles in China.
This Chukong funding round closes just a few days after a $3 billion valuation for Finnish Clash of Clans developer SuperCell. Japanese investor SoftBank and Puzzle & Dragons developer GungHo Online snatched up a 51 percent stake in the company for just a bit over $1.5 billion.
Clash of Clans typically sits near the top of the iOS top-grossing apps chart, and SuperCell only just released an Android version this month. The SoftBank and GungHo investment reveals a confidence in mobile-gaming’s long-term viability. With its diversified business strategy, Chukong stands to benefit by making and publishing games while also licensing tools to others.