ByteDance said on Monday that its gaming subsidiary Nuverse has signed an agreement to acquire Moonton, a Shanghai-based mobile game developer focusing on overseas markets, in the latest demonstration of the TikTok owner’s commitment to the competitive but lucrative gaming business.
After the acquisition, seven-year-old Moonton, which is well-known in Southeast Asia for its multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) game Mobile Legends, will continue to operate independently and deepen its partnership with ByteDance to explore global markets, Moonton CEO Yuan Jing said in an internal memo, according to domestic media reports.
“Moonton is the perfect partner to help expand our gaming strategy in international markets. Through cross-team collaboration and drawing on lessons and insights from its own rapid growth, Moonton provides the strategic support needed to accelerate Nuverse’s global gaming offerings” ByteDance said in a statement.
The acquisition deal comes just days after Nuverse announced the establishment of the Nuverse Inspiration Fund aimed at investing in promising young game development teams.
Last month, Nuverse, which was established in 2019, launched its official website with the introduction of the first batch of its gaming titles including Strike Royale, Arena of Evolution: Red Tides, Blades of the Guardians and Terminal Battleground.
In recent years, ByteDance has increased investment in China’s gaming sector in the hope of competing with bigger rivals like Tencent and NetEase. Previous media reports said that ByteDance had about 2,000 gaming developers at the end of 2o2o who worked in offices scattering in some major Chinese cities including Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Hangzhou.