The real-action, online gaming is the fastest-growing segment of the market. In fact, by 2014, online games will itself be a billion-dollar market, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers’ projection.
So, it’s not a huge surprise to see some M&A action in this space as companies jostle for market share.
Recently, Ocash, the Australian startup, acquired OnlineGamez Australia, a distributor of online game credits in Australia and New Zealand. This week, Malaysian Internet payments giant MOL Global announced the acquisition of a majority stake in Ocash itself.
Exciting new synergies
“This is a significant step for MOL to continue to build and strengthen its business strategy across the Asia Pacific region,” said Craig White, president of MOL Global.
White said the partnership would “provide more business opportunities for our region’s game developers and publishers as they will be able to extend their reach via MOL to consumers outside the Asian region.”
MOL is one of the largest online payment providers in the world. It has more than 600,000 physical and online payment channels, besides partnerships with over 150 online game publishers and social networks worldwide including Facebook, Zynga and Electronic Arts.
Ocash founder Budi Handoko has been named the chief executive of MOL Australia, and will power the company’s growth Down Under.
“We identify ourselves in line with the vision of MOL and the synergy between both organisations will allow our businesses to reach new heights,” said Handoko, an online game specialist. “At the same time, our growing player community will be able to gain new secured channels to purchase various popular digital products such as Facebook Credits, as well as be introduced to MOL’s huge portal of international and Asian games.”
Ocash has specialised in processing payments for online games credits in the Australia and New Zealand markets. Its flagship product – ocash points – is a virtual credit utilised by online game enthusiasts to purchase popular game credits from various game publishers.
PricewaterhouseCoopers predicts consumer spending on games in Australia will increase to $1,584 million in 2014, mainly on the strength of growth in online games and wireless games. Estimated compound annual growth in consumer spending for online games (13.6%) and wireless games (13%) for 2010-2014 is significantly higher than that for consoles and handheld devices (5.8%).