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Nexon’s Maplestory sold $30m of digital goods in the US in 2007 May 27, 2008

Posted by jeremyliew in digital goods, games, games 2.0, gaming, mmorpg, virtual goods.
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The WSJ had an article on Friday about Nexon and the virtual goods model. Not new news to most readers of this blog but some good information nuggests in the article:

Prepaid cards used to buy Nexon game items are now the second best-selling entertainment gift card at Target Corp. stores in the U.S., after cards for Apple Inc.’s iTunes Store, Target says…

Nexon’s biggest hit in the U.S. so far is MapleStory, an online role-playing game popular with teenagers in which players assume the identities of warriors, magicians and thieves and collectively fight monsters. The game has 85 million users globally, of which 5.9 million are registered in the U.S. Last year players world-wide bought more than 1.3 million articles of clothing and more than one million hair makeovers for their MapleStory characters. Nexon’s U.S. revenue last year more than tripled to $29.3 million from $8.5 million the prior year.

With $30m in US sales and 6m US registered users, assuming a 20% “active player” rate and 10% “buyer rate”, that implies an ARPU of $20/mth which sounds about right and is consistent with number we’ve seen from games in Asia. It sounds like the US will be following very similar models of virtual goods monetization that we’ve seen in Asia.

Comments»

1. kevin gao - May 27, 2008

i find interesting the number of online gaming IPOs that have happened in asia (korea, china, japan)…and their complete absence here in the US…although i suppose that’s coming with time given the (lack of) maturity in the US market

2. Simon - May 27, 2008

The “buyer’s rates” I had the chance to whitness are more around 5% than 10% though !

3. Out to Pasture » Blog Archive » WSJ on Nexon & virtual goods - May 27, 2008

[…] Jeremy Liew’s blog pointed me to a WSJ article I missed on Friday covering Nexon’s free-to-play, virtual goods business model. Jeremy writes: “With $30m in US sales and 6m US registered users, assuming a 20% “active player” rate and 10% “buyer rate”, that implies an ARPU of $20/mth which sounds about right and is consistent with number we’ve seen from games in Asia. It sounds like the US will be following very similar models of virtual goods monetization that we’ve seen in Asia.“ […]

4. MMO Clerks » MapleStory reaps over $29 million in U.S. virtual item sales - May 31, 2008

[…] Liew provides some additional commentary on the Nexon windfall over at Lightspeed: “With $30m in US sales and 6m US registered users, assuming a 20% […]

5. Social Gaming Pwns The Industry - June 6, 2008

[…] is reportedly doing more than $50m in virtual goods sales (mostly in Europe) and Nexon’s Maplestory is doing around $30m in virtual goods sale in the US. Companies like Acclaim, Stardoll and K2 Network are ramping their virtual goods sales in hot […]

6. Jackson Fish Market » $30m in Virtual Goods Sales - June 10, 2008

[…] “Nexon’s Maplestory sold $30m of digital goods in the US in 2007″ Posted on June 10th, 2008 in Interesting […]

7. Inside Social Games » Blog Archive » New Data Points on Digital Goods Revenues - Tracking the convergence of games and social networks - July 1, 2008

[…] doing the math, Jeremy Liew estimates that Maplestory has an ARPU of about $20/month, “which sounds about right and is consistent with number we’ve seen from games in […]

8. Aion - Payment options - Page 2 - AionSource.com - August 26, 2008

[…] (average revenue per user) on f2p vs p2p indicates that the ARPU for f2p is much higher than p2p (see this article for a typical account) – clearly NCSoft knows this as well as the next games company, so i’m […]

9. Aion - Payment options - Page 3 - AionSource.com - August 26, 2008

[…] (average revenue per user) on f2p vs p2p indicates that the ARPU for f2p is much higher than p2p (see this article for a typical account) – clearly NCSoft knows this as well as the next games company, so i’m […]

10. Gamblog » Blog Archive » Making Money From Your Game - November 18, 2008

[…] and there are a lot of examples of it doing extremely well. Just look at Maple Story which made over $30M in 2007 from selling in-game clothes and hair makeovers! We’ll be thinking very carefully about this model […]

11. JOHN - January 22, 2009

I have played maplestory for a whole year, without spending 1$ on it, BUT whats more important is that it took me like 5months to stop playing that game, and i didnt just play the game i used to spend more than 5 hours a day looking at some websites that are related to the game, AND I used to stay up until 3am just to see new events or to download new patches for the game.

12. Mark O Aiser - March 23, 2009

In my opnion there is no problem speding money in a game that you really likes.

13. GrahamDent - February 9, 2010

and they say maplestory is free =p


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