Thailand’s Ookbee launched its new mobile game platform earlier today. It looks to be modeled after Line Games in that it features an array of social gaming titles from various developers that are integrated with the new Ookbee service.
Known for being one of the biggest ebook stores in Southeast Asia, gaming is a major new challenge Ookbee wants to take on.
According to Moo Natavudh, the CEO of Ookbee, this is a test of how the company can create a new revenue stream. Moo told Tech in Asia, “[We establish] a partnership with other game publishers to experiment with ad revenue from Ookbee traffic.”
Ookbee’s game platform is in beta and is available in the Thai language only.
The mobile gaming industry is set to be worth US$83 billion by 2016, and mobile gaming is now booming in Asia as smartphone adoption takes off. We’ve seen the success of firms in the region with gaming, such VNG and Tencent but those two are mostly focused on their home nations (Vietnam and China, respectively). So perhaps Ookbee is leaping into the social gaming industry before any firm has a chance to dominate it in Southeast Asia?
Ookbee is now valued at $US70 million. It’s backed by Tokyo-based IT outsourcing firm Transcosmos and Thai VC Invent.
In the ebook space, Ookbee’s competitors are Rakuten’s Kobo, Dtac’s Readever, and FlipReads.