NetworkNewsWire Editorial Coverage: Everywhere you go these days, heads are bent over smartphones and tablets—shopping, checking Facebook, scanning news headlines, watching movies, accessing banking information, checking emails and, of course, gaming. Though it was once a wide-spread belief that a mobile gaming enterprise could not survive as a publicly traded company, the tide has turned. Several leading brands in the industry are proving they can not only survive, but can thrive as publicly traded entities in the global gaming market. As public mobile gaming stocks continue gaining market share within the videogame industry, companies like Tapinator, Inc. (OTCQB: TAPM) (Tapinator Profile), Zynga, Inc. (NASDAQ: ZNGA), Electronic Arts, Inc. (NASDAQ: EA), Glu Mobile, Inc. (NASDAQ: GLUU) and Activision Blizzard, Inc. (NASDAQ: ATVI) are showing they mean business in this stalwart, promising market.
In the past, debates have abounded over whether venture capital funding was the right thing for mobile gaming companies because, essentially, having hit games was the determining factor in whether or not they would find success. While that is still fundamentally true, mobile gaming companies have figured a few things out to greatly bolster their profitability—like how to cash in on in-game advertising, how to sustainably acquire users, how to employ user-friendly monetization methods, and how to successfully and effectively integrate brands into their games.
Investors are certainly feeling friendlier toward mobile games companies, and the market outlook is rosy. An annual report released by Juniper Research in February 2017 predicted the overall videogame market (including both mobile and PC games) would grow to $132 billion in revenues by 2021. A Global Games Market Report released by Newzoo in April 2017 projected global game revenues would reach $108.9 billion during 2017—an increase of 7.8 percent from 2016. Within the global gaming market, mobile gaming has proven to be the most profitable segment, grabbing 42 percent of the market share. By 2020, the same Newzoo report predicts, mobile gaming will amount to more than half of the total games market worldwide.
For companies like Tapinator, Inc. (TAPM), it’s all good news.
Engaging millions of players with its diversified portfolio of over 300 mobile games, Tapinator is generating alluring and predictable returns through the sale of branded advertisements and consumer app store transactions. Hundreds of thousands of daily downloads on the iOS, Google Play and Amazon platforms have made Tapinator “One to Watch” in the mobile gaming market.
The business strategy employed by Tapinator includes creating segment-leading full-featured games, like “ROCKY™” and “Solitaire Dash,” that give gamers unique, in-depth content as well as fostering long-term player retention and producing higher ROIs. This full-featured games model makes it possible for Tapinator to create potentially $100 million+ franchise-type games that are sustainable and have product lifespans of five years or more. The company utilizes a set of proprietary dynamic development and marketing processes that are factored on gaming category, estimated player retention, and projected player profitability. In a press release earlier this month, the company said it expects Full-Featured Games Bookings to increase by more than 200% in 2017 as compared to 2016 (http://nnw.fm/LW8yt).
Tapinator recently launched two new full-featured games: “Big Sport Fishing 2017” – which had more than 520,000 player downloads within the first seven days of its global release – and “Dice Mage 2.” Both were recognized as “New Games We Love” on the Apple iOS platform, as noted in a recent press release announcing updates to Dice Mage 2 (http://nnw.fm/Xy3V5).
Additionally, Tapinator’s Rapid-Launch Games division recently experienced a spike in player interest with the launch of “Fidget Spinner Superhero” and “Scary Shark Evolution 3D.”
Coming up during Q4 2017 and Q1 2018, Tapinator is scheduled to release four new titles: “ColorFill,” “Divide & Conquer,” “Shadowborne” and “Fusion Heroes.” The formula behind these games consists of a combination of proven gameplay elements; class-leading monetization systems; and the creative magic of the robust team of developers, strategists and product specialists that is Tapinator’s backbone.
Diversified revenue sources for Tapinator include 54 percent derived from in-game advertising and 46 percent from consumer purchases made through app stores. Advertising placement is strategically limited to appear between game levels, and video ads additionally play on a rewards basis that is directly tied to game currency.
The company is currently exploring promising opportunities in virtual reality and augmented reality and has exploratorily released several prototype virtual reality games to gather data before pursuing a more significant product in this category. Tapinator further intends to pursue publishing transactions leveraging its network, platform relationships and operational prowess and is additionally exploring notable gaming IP expansion opportunities to new platforms like Steam and to leading messaging apps.
While Tapinator may yet be an unknown name to some (though that isn’t likely to remain true for long), both gamers and non-gamers alike easily recognize the name of Zynga, Inc. (ZNGA), the developer behind such hugely popular games as “FarmVille” and “Words with Friends.” It hasn’t always been smooth sailing for Zynga, but the stock price for this social games leader has been on the rise, going from less than $3 to more than $4 over the course of the past year. Part of this success may be attributed to the company appointing Frank Gibeau, former executive at Electronic Arts Inc. (EA), as its new CEO in March 2016. Various other former EA execs were then brought aboard by Gibeau, and attention was turned to live operations and increasing the revenues of Zynga’s existing properties instead of gambling on expensive new launches.
Meanwhile, EA’s stock price has been on an incredible upward climb for several years now, steadily soaring from less than $15 at the commencement of 2013 to breaking the $120 mark this year. The company’s portfolio includes such chartbusting gaming brands as “The Sims,” “Madden NFL,” “EA SPORTS FIFA,” “Battlefield,” “Dragon Age” and “Plants vs. Zombies.”
Like Zynga, Glu Mobile Inc. (GLUU) has had ups and downs, but it, too, seems to be making a steady recovery, having dropped below $2 at one point this year but then climbed above $4 and, to date, stayed there. Glu Mobile’s focus is on creating original IP games, with a portfolio that includes “Contract Killer,” “Cooking Dash,” “Deer Hunter,” “Diner Dash,” “Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores,” “Eternity Warriors,” “Frontline Commando” and more. The company additionally offers branded IP games that include “Kim Kardashian: Hollywood,” “Sniper X with Jason Statham,” “Gordon Ramsey Dash” and “Britney Spears: American Dream.”
Another interactive games player that has enjoyed a steady upward climb in recent years is Activision Blizzard, Inc. (ATVI), the creator of such blockbuster franchises as “Call of Duty,” “Skylanders” and “Destiny.” Activision Blizzard’s stock price was below $11 at the commencement of 2013; this year, the company’s stock has broken $66.
The global gaming industry is certainly going strong, with mobile gaming taking an increasingly large bite of the market share with every passing year. The outlook is good and the future is bright in this thriving industry, and the aggressive, innovative companies are proving they have staying power as publicly traded entities.
For more information on Tapinator, Inc., visit Tapinator, Inc. (TAPM)
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