Exactly a week since its ban and 24 hours after it severed ties with Tencent Games in India, the South Korean maker of popular mobile game PUBG is scouting for an Indian partner to revive the popular game’s fortunes.
For PUBG, India is its largest market with more than 175 million downloads, accounting for almost a quarter of total global downloads, according to Sensor Tower. PUBG Corporation is a subsidiary of Bluehole Games, the South Korean company that developed PUBG. The ban on PUBG app is also hurting India’s small, but fledgling game streaming and the professional gaming community.
According to a Mint report, a new licensing agreement is in the works with an Indian gaming firm to pass on the rights to run the PUBG Mobile game in India.
PUBG Corp. will retain the publishing rights for the game, with the Indian partner handling the distribution.
The report however said that it is not yet known whether a potential pact with an Indian firm will lead to the lifting of the ban imposed by the government.
Severing its ties with Tencent, PUBG Corporation said in a blog, “In light of recent developments, PUBG Corporation has made the decision to no longer authorise the PUBG MOBILE franchise to Tencent Games in India. Moving forward, PUBG Corporation will take on all publishing responsibilities within the country.” Tencent Games was PUBG Mobile’s licensed publisher in India.
After the ban, Tencent’s shares fell more than 2% which is the second biggest fall in market value for the company in recent times. The company lost more than $14 Bn in market value.
Recently, there were rumours about Reliance Jio taking over the PUBG license in India.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) is an online multiplayer battle royale game developed and published by PUBG Corporation, a subsidiary of South Korean video game company Bluehole. PUBG Corporation counts Chinese multinational tech conglomerate Tencent as a publishing partner for the game’s mobile version. Tencent also holds a 10% stake in PUBG’s parent company.