Keywords has taken its first step into Japan by acquiring mobile and HTML5 developer Wizcorp.
The Irish services studio has purchased Wizcorp for $1.07 million (953,000EUR). The Tokyo-based developer has created a number of web and mobile games in collaboration with companies like LINE, Square Enix, Avex, Yahoo Japan and Bandai Namco.
The Wizcorp team joins Keywords' 300 staff already based in Tokyo.
Keywords is on a constant lookout for new acquisitions. In 2018, the services firm snapped up eight studios worth a collective $68.1 million.
“When we were looking at options to expand our engineering and art and development services, Japan was one of the most interesting places, most relevant places to do that,” said Keywords RMD for Asia, Christopher Kennedy, speaking to VentureBeat.
“Obviously Japan has a long-standing history in games. The current market is very good for both traditional console and mobile. We were very interested in getting involved in Japan, developing games for Japanese clients.”
Wizcorp CEO and co-founder Guillaume Hansali added: “It made sense when we were approached by Keywords because work for hire game development is something we’ve been doing for a very long time.”
“We’ve been working for Japanese publishers and game developers for many years. We see clearly that we could be, potentially, a bridge to non-Japanese markets, to Europe and other western markets. We could provide a one-stop solution that’s not only development but also localization and live operations in a lot of different countries and a lot of different languages.”