MTV Networks and international game publisher Nexon have announced a broad based strategic partnership. The companies will partner to create a new premium user experience for MTVN's NEOPETS, one of the largest youth communities on the Internet, and includes MTVN's marketing of the launch of Nexon's casual MMOG game titles in North America via its portfolio of television and online brands. Two of the first titles to be marketed under the alliance will be MAPLE STORY and KART RIDER, which are already enjoyed by 50 million and 80 million players around the world, respectively.
Nexon and Neopets will partner to create a new user experience for MTVN's NEOPETS in North America and territories throughout Asia and Europe. This new service will enhance the current NEOPETS world, known as Neopia, by providing users the ability to purchase premium level virtual items for customization and personalization, in addition to those available on the site. Nexon will also provide marketing and promotional support in Asia across its games portal for the new Neopets services.
MTVN will also become a strategic marketing partner for the launch of Nexon's first three games to be distributed in North America. Marketing campaigns will be run across a portfolio of MTVN television and online brands including MTV, MTV2, MTV U, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, The-N, Neopets.com, Shockwave.com, Addictinggames.com, Gametrailers.com and XFire. The marketing partnership will include Nexon's MAPLE STORY, AUDITION and KART RIDER titles. The partnership will also present opportunities for Nexon to create and develop MTV Networks' branded items within their games.
"We are delighted to establish this mutually beneficial partnership with one of the world's leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms and the premier media partner in North America for Nexon's wide ranging target audience. We are confident that through the alliance, NEOPETS will gain strong momentum in successfully serving its users with more value added services and that Nexon will be able to rapidly expand in the North American market," said David Lee, ceo of Nexon Japan.
"This partnership between MTVN opens an important creative exchange for us with one of the leaders in online casual MMOGs in Asia and the world, and is a significant move for us in our growth as a multi-platform global entertainment company," commented Steve Youngwood, evp, digital media, MTVN Kids and Family Group. "Nexon is the gold standard among game developers in a leading games market, and is a company that shares our vision and has the resources and the reach to provide quality and engaging entertainment to young people everywhere."
Added Kyra Reppen, svp/gm of Neopets, "We are very excited about this opportunity to further widen the creative net for Neopets. This premium level experience will provide our members with an exciting new means to enhance their personal involvement with the site and represents a significant new business opportunity for our company in Asia, where Neopets will benefit tremendously from Nexon's creative and marketing expertise. We are excited about this alliance. "
A pioneer and world leader in massive multiplayer online gaming (MMOG), Nexon developed and introduced the first graphics-based MMOG in 1996 (KINGDOM OF THE WIND) and the first casual MMOG in 2001 (CRAZY ARCADE BNB). Nexon created the virtual item purchasing business model in the online game sector and has sold hundreds of millions of virtual items worldwide. Nexon is the leader in the casual MMOG sector in Korea with the largest gaming portal in the market and with more than 16 million Koreans (more than 30% of the Korea's population) having played KART RIDER alone.
Neopets.com is one of the largest and fastest growing youth community sites on the Internet. To date, more than 30 million members worldwide have created NEOPETS accounts in 11 different languages, generating more than five billion pageviews per month. Both Nielsen//NetRatings and comScore Media Metrix consistently rank Neopets.com as one of the top-10 "stickiest" sites on the Web. NeoPets Inc. was acquired by Viacom in June 2005 and joined MTV Networks Kids and Family Group stable of brands.