South Korea’s leading internet company Kakao and leading game developer Com2uS are downsizing their Metaverse teams as the virtual world platforms posted big losses in the first half of 2023, local news agency Newsis reported.
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- Com2uS, a major mobile game developer that generated $536 million in revenue last year, recently downsized its staff in its Metaverse division, according to Newsis. Details of the workforce reductions were not disclosed.
- The company’s Metaverse platform, Com2Verse, was officially launched on August 1st this year. However, the business unit behind the Metaverse platform posted an operating loss of about $6.2 million in the first half of this year.
- Colorverse, another South Korea-based Metaverse company, conducted a round of layoffs earlier this year without disclosing the details to the public. Colorverse, owned by Kakao’s gaming subsidiary Kakao Games and its subsidiary Neptune, posted losses of $8.6 million last year.
- In July, CyTown, a Metaverse revamp of the once wildly popular local social media service Cyworld, shut down after a year. The virtual platform failed to attract users and only recorded around 10,000 downloads in the Google Play App Store.
- A survey released in May by the Korea Information Society Development Institute found that only 4.2% of South Korean citizens regularly use Metaverse services. The survey’s broad interpretation of what constitutes a “metaverse” platform included popular games Minecraft, Roblox and Animal Crossing.
- Metaverse pioneer Meta, formerly Facebook, posted a loss of $13.7 billion with its Metaverse division Reality Labs.
- In February, ten Japanese companies, including Fujitsu, Mitsubishi and Sumitomo Mitsui, agreed to form the Japan Metaverse Economic Zone, a working group to promote local metaverse infrastructure. The group has made no further announcements related to the project.
- Meanwhile, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said on Monday that it would seek to set regulatory standards for the metaverse to become a global leader in the sector.
- Kakao and Com2uS have not yet responded to Forkast’s email request for comment sent on Friday.
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