Bilibili CEO to oversee gaming division directly in pursuit of boosting revenue

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As per an internal email seen by Reuters, the chief executive of southeast Asia’s leading anime, comics, and games (ACG) company, Bilibili, has taken over direct control of the company’s gaming division as it looks for ways to accelerate revenue growth.

The Alibaba-backed company’s gaming division will now answer to Chen Rui, the CEO of Bilibili, rather than Zhang Feng, a senior vice president, according to an email sent last Friday (Nov. 4) by the human resources department of Bilibili. The Shanghai-headquartered company is most known for its YouTube-like video-sharing platform.

The news was first reported by the local media on the weekend, increasing Bilibili’s shares by about 10% in Hong Kong on Monday, as investors interpreted this as Bilibili’s attempt to refocus on its gaming division, which once served as a significant source of revenue for the company but has struggled in recent times.

About 80% of Bilibili’s entire revenue was from gaming when it went public on the Nasdaq in 2018. The strategy game Fate/Grand Order (FGO) was at the time its most well-known title. But throughout the years, Bilibili has had trouble coming up with fresh blockbusters, while other Chinese businesses like NetEase and miHoYo have continued to grow.

Currently, companies in competition like NetEase and miHoYo have been creating multiplayer orientated open world games that are famous among the youth. While RPG games like FGO are popular, people mostly play them on desktop and not on mobile devices thus reducing its accessibility.

Gaming revenue, which made up around 21% of Bilibili’s overall revenue in the quarter that ended in June, fell by 15%. Despite its video platform having more than 300 million monthly viewers, the corporation has traditionally struggled to earn a profit.