Was it really just three months ago that Japan’s Gumi looked like a juggernaut?

In a stunning turnaround, the mobile game publisher today said it plans to lay off about 11 percent of its employees and that it would also sell two of its gaming assets. The company projected that about 100 employees would accept buyout offers, out of 901 total employees, according to Reuters.

The company held a spectacular IPO back in December that seemed to cap a remarkable run of success driven by its Brave Frontier game. The IPO raised hundreds of millions of dollars and seemed to indicate a big future ahead in a mobile gaming market that could hi $30 billion this year, predicts market researcher Newzoo.

The IPO came after an ambitious expansion into North America. The company hired a former Xbox exec. It opened a branch in Canada as well as one in Austin, Texas.

But a few weeks ago, the company dramatically lowered its outlook for the current fiscal year ending in April. Rather than posting a profit of $10 million, the company said it would lose $3.4 million.

What happened?

According to Tech In Asia, Brave Frontier did not become as big of a hit outside of Japan as expected. In addition, the company had apparently fallen behind in its publishing schedule and that other games failed to pick up the slack.

We’ll see whether the latest layoffs give the company time to right the ship.


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