Press Release from Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.
SHANGHAI, April 16 -- Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. and NetEase.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:NTES) today announced that Blizzard Entertainment's WORLD OF WARCRAFT will be licensed to an affiliated company of NetEase.com, Inc. in mainland China for a term of 3 years following the expiration of the current license agreement.
Both companies announced a partnership on Blizzard Entertainment's WARCRAFT III, STARCRAFT II, and BATTLE.net gaming platform last summer. Today's announcement further enhances the partnership between Blizzard Entertainment and NetEase and promotes a consistent level of quality and service in mainland China for all Blizzard Entertainment games involved in the partnership.
"We appreciate the enthusiasm that Chinese gamers have shown us over the years, and we've always worked hard, in collaboration with our partners, to ensure that these players receive the same high-quality service and gameplay experiences that we deliver in other regions," said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. "This new agreement with NetEase will support that goal for years to come, and we look forward to collaborating with them on a smooth transition for WORLD OF WARCRAFT moving forward."
"We are excited to be working with Blizzard Entertainment now on WORLD OF WARCRAFT in addition to WARCRAFT III, STARCRAFT II, and BATTLE.net," stated William Ding, CEO of NetEase. "By combining Blizzard Entertainment's expertise in developing world-class games with NetEase's strength in online-game operation in China, I am confident that we will be able to deliver the best gaming experiences in the world to our players."
Further details on the transition plans for WORLD OF WARCRAFT in mainland China are available at http://wow.163.com/. As additional plans are finalized, that website will be updated with more information in the weeks and months ahead.
About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.
Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft and the Warcraft, StarCraft, and Diablo series, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (http://www.blizzard.com/ ), a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI), is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry's most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment's track record includes eleven #1-selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company's online-gaming service, Battle.net, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active users.
About NetEase.com Inc.
NetEase.com, Inc. is a leading China-based Internet technology company that pioneered the development of applications, services and other technologies for the Internet in China. NetEase's online communities and personalized premium services have established a large and stable user base for the NetEase websites. In particular, NetEase provides online game services to Internet users through the licensing or in-house development of massively multiplayer online role-playing games, including FANTASY WESTWARD JOURNEY, WESTWARD JOURNEY ONLINE II, WESTWARD JOURNEY ONLINE III, and TianXia 2.