The publicly traded online game company ChangYou has launched one of the biggest development investment programs in gaming history. The company said today it will invest $600 million in mobile game developers in the coming years.
The company made the announcement in advance of the Game Developers Conference next week in San Francisco at the Moscone Convention Center. Dubbed the CYOU Win Plan, the program is a way for the Chinese online game publisher to vault to the top of the mobile game charts, where increasing numbers of gamers are migrating — and billions of dollars are at stake.
ChangYou will support independent game developers in marketing, distribution, and business operations. It will invest the $600 million as follows: $200 million to acquire mobile games; $200 million for mobile game marketing over the next two years; and $200 million revenue share for game developers over the next three years.
Many game publishers are giving money to mobile publishers, but most of those programs range from $1 million to $10 million. ChangYou’s investment, a third of which will go directly toward acquiring new games, is unprecedented in its scale.
“2014 will be an exciting year for ChangYou,” said Joey Jia, the general manager of ChangYou (U.S.). “The $600 Million developer’s program offers a tremendous opportunity for independent gaming developers to publish their games worldwide leveraging our expertise in both the PC and mobile space.”
ChangYou will talk about the program Monday at GDC on Monday in the West Hall, booth TTW39. ChangYou makes popular online games in China such as Zentia. But it’s a smaller player in mobile games, with about 2 million folks playing its Max Axe action game.
ChangYou started in 2003 as the massively multiplayer online role-playing game division of Sohu.com. In 2007, it became a separate company, publishing free-to-play games such as Dragon Oath and Sword Girls.