16363177946_b9311a25f0_kShanghai’s Pudong district at night; credit: gags9999 shared under Creative Commons

Remember how we reported China is now the global top market for mobile gaming? A new article in OZY by Nick Fouriezos further illuminated the potentials and the pitfalls of doing business in mobile gaming in China. China has proven a notoriously difficult market to penetrate successfully for many non-Chinese companies.

For every success story, there are the cautionary tales, such as how an aggressively-expanding Zynga opened a Beijing office, only to close it in February 2015 and lay off 71 employees after it missed its numbers.

It should be noted Zynga’s problems were wider than just a failed foray into Chinese market. In fact, Fox Business recently aired a video yesterday “Zynga shares on death watch?” An analyst at Seeking Alpha criticized the title as overblown, though, and points to solid business in Zynga’s long-term turnaround strategy. Still, China left Zynga with a temporarily-bloodied nose.

OZY also mentions how allegedly Supercell (publisher of Clash of Clans and Boom Beach) lost money even on its most popular title due to a technical error.

Making headway in China can be done, and is being done by many companies. There is quite a lot to be learned from those who have already blazed the trail. For instance, many of the lessons learned by Supercell were shared in a Forbes article a year ago by Lisa Hanson of Niko Partners.

Are you looking to expand your business overseas? Let us know at projects@e2f.com, so we can share our experience, and help you avoid some of the more nuanced pitfalls.