[THE INVESTOR] NCSoft, one of Korea’s leading online game publishers, invested 22 billion won (US$19.7 million) in visual effects firm 4th Creative Party, the company said on July 2.
Founded in 2009, 4th Creative Party has participated in 180 movies, including international Korean hits “Okja” and “The Handmaiden,” as a visual effects partner.
“4th Creative Party holds many capabilities including the country’s best visual effects technology,” said NCSoft Chairman Kim Taek-jin. “We expect a strategic synergy effect in digital media such as animation and games.”
Lee Jeon-hyoung, CEO of 4th Creative Party, pointed out that the two companies share the same vision for the use of intellectual property and digital media. “Our collaboration will be an opportunity for both sides to make a leap as a comprehensive media content group,” he said.
NCSoft holds powerful intellectual property assets with games such as “Lineage” and “Blade & Soul.”
The latest investment is part of NCSoft’s efforts to secure future technology and business engines. The Korean game maker best known for “Lineage” invested in London-based gaming studio Sensible Object, the maker of “Beasts of Balance” in June and Korea’s natural language processing startup Scatter Lab in January.
The stock price of NCSoft, however, has remained weak amid a lack of new games, according to a report by HMC Investment Securities on June 28. The report added that the game maker’s sales and operating profit are expected to rise 73.2 percent to 448 billion won and 359.9 percent to 172 billion won from a year ago, respectively, but the figures are down 5.7 percent and 15.4 percent from the previous quarter.
By Park Ga-young (firstname.lastname@example.org)