NetEase, Inc. (simplified Chinese: 网易; traditional Chinese: 網易; pinyin: WǎngYì) is a Chinese Internet technology company providing online services centered on content, community, communications, and commerce. The company was founded in 1997 by Ding Lei. NetEase develops and operates online PC and mobile games, advertising services, email services, and e-commerce platforms in China. It is one of the largest Internet and video game companies in the world. NetEase has an on-demand music-streaming service (NetEase Music). The company also owns several pig farms.
|Headquarters||Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China|
|Ding Lei (CEO)|
|Revenue||CN¥ 59.24 billion (2019)|
|CN¥ 13.79 billion (2019)|
|CN¥ 21.43 billion (2019)|
|Total assets||CN¥ 112.12 billion (2019)|
Number of employees
|18,129 (December 2017)|
NetEase Cloud Music
NetEase Games (Thunder Fire)
NetEase Games (Interactive Entertainment)
NetEase D&R Center Lab
NetEase Wisdom Enterprise
|Subsidiaries||See § Development studios|
NetEase video games include, the Westward Journey series, Tianxia III, Heroes of Tang Dynasty Zero, Ghost II, Nostos and Onmyoji. NetEase also partnered with Blizzard to operate Chinese versions of their games, such as World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, and Overwatch from 2008 to 2023.
The company was founded in June 1997 by Chinese entrepreneur Ding Lei, and grew rapidly due in part to its investment in search engine technology. In 2012 the company's official English name was changed from NetEase.com, Inc to NetEase, Inc.
In 2008, the 163.com domain attracted at least 1.8 million visitors annually by 2008 according to a Compete.com survey. In 2010 the site was the 28th most visited site in the world according to Alexa's internet rankings. NetEase's official website address is 163.com. This was attributed to the past when Chinese internet users had to dial "163" to connect to the internet, before the availability of broadband internet. NetEase is the largest provider of free e-mail services in China with more than 940 million users as of 2017. In addition to 163.com, the company also runs 188.com, 126.com and more.
The company also operates a news website at news.163.com along with an associated app. In 2022, Riot Games sued NetEase over alleged copyright violation concerning Riot Game's Valorant.
Expansion and acquisitions Edit
NetEase launched their first Western Headquarters in August 2014, bringing one of the largest tech companies in China to the US. In January 2020, NetEase discussed secondary listings with the Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing.
In 2018 NetEase invested US$100 million into Bungie for a minority stake in the company and a seat on its board of directors. In December of the same year NetEase invested in New Zealand developer A44 (Formally known as Aurora 44), and it sold its comics business to Bilibili. In 2019 NetEase obtained a minority stake in Quantic Dream for an undisclosed investment.
In May 2022, NetEase opened its first US studio in Austin, Texas. It is called Jackalope Games, and is led by Jack Emmert, a veteran of massively multiplayer online role-playing games who worked on titles including City of Heroes, Neverwinter, Star Trek Online, and DC Universe Online. They will work on PC and console games and operate independently from NetEase.
In July 2022, Polish VR studio Something Random announced that it had received an investment from NetEase.
In August 2022, NetEase announced the acquisition of Quantic Dream after the 2019 minority investment done in the company. After this, the studio will become a subsidiary part of its parent company and will help NetEase objective to have more console game releases.
In August 2022, Something Wicked Games founder Jeff Gardiner announced that NetEase had invested $13.2 Million in the studio.
In February 2023, it was announced that NetEase Games fund video game division in Gotanda, Tokyo known as "Studio Flare", co-founded by former vice-president of Marvelous, Toshinori Aoki and former producer of Arc System Works' BlazBlue series, Toshimichi Mori.
In March 2023, NetEase launched the Anici anime brand to "support the anime industry", delivering a variety of animation together with various partners.
In May 2023, NetEase announced the establishment of Bad Brain Game Studios, a new game studio headquartered in Canada, with offices in Toronto, Ontario, and Montreal, Quebec. The studio is led by Sean Crooks, who previously worked on the Watch Dogs franchise and Driver: San Francisco. He is joined by a team of veteran developers who have worked on Far Cry 2, Child of Light, Just Dance, Army of Two, Splinter Cell: Conviction, and Splinter Cell: Blacklist, and more. In the same month, NetEase Games announced the establishment of PinCool, a new game studio headquartered in Tokyo, Japan and led by representative director and president Ryutaro Ichimura, who is best known as a longtime producer in the Dragon Quest franchise.
The company has a history of partnerships with other companies. In 2008, Blizzard Entertainment partnered with NetEase to bring some of their games to the Chinese market. Both NetEase and Blizzard announced the suspension of most game services within Mainland China by January 2023 due to the expiration of current licensing agreement. According to NetEast's statement on November 17, 2022, Overwatch 2, Diablo III, World of Warcraft, StarCraft, Hearthstone, and Heroes of the Storm will no longer receive service in mainland China on January 23, 2023 and will not be renewed.
In April 2012, NetEase began testing a restaurant recommendation mobile app called "Fan Fan". In 2017 NetEase made an agreement with the American company Marvel Comics to develop a comic based on a Chinese superhero. In addition 12 comic copies by Marvel would be released online, such as The Amazing Spider-Man, Captain America, and Guardians of the Galaxy.
Chinese government regulation Edit
In October 2020, the Cyberspace Administration of China ordered NetEase to undergo "rectification" and temporarily suspended certain comment functions after censors found "inappropriate" comments on its news app.
|2001||Fantasy Westward Journey||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|2002||Westward Journey Online II||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|2015||Revelation Online||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|2017||Rules of Survival||NetEase Games||NetEase Games||Discontinued on June 27, 2022|
|2018||Identity V||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|LifeAfter||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|2018||Creative Destruction||NetEase Games||NetEase Games||Discontinued on June 27, 2022|
|2019||Cyber Hunter||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|Sky||Thatgamecompany||NetEase Games||Publisher in China only|
|Marvel Super War||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|Super Mecha Champions||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|2020||Marvel Duel||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|2021||Ace Racer||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|Naraka: Bladepoint||24 Entertainment||NetEase Games|
|Astracraft||NetEase Games||NetEase Games||Discontinued on December 21, 2022|
|The Lord of the Rings: Rise to War||NetEase Games||Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment|
|2022||Diablo Immortal||NetEase Games, Blizzard Entertainment||Blizzard Entertainment|
|Eggy Party||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|Hyper Front||NetEase Games, BattleFun Games||NetEase Games|
|Lost Light||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|2023||Dead by Daylight mobile||Behaviour Interactive, NetEase Games||Behaviour Interactive, NetEase||NetEase as Publisher China only|
|TBA||Racing Master||Dahua Studios, Codemasters||NetEase Games|
|Tom and Jerry: Chase||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|Harry Potter: Magic Awakened||NetEase, Envoy Games||NetEase Games, Portkey Games, Envoy Games|
|Once Human||NetEase, Starry Studio||NetEase Games, Starry Studio|
|Where Winds Meet||Everstone Studio||NetEase Games|
|Project: BloodStrike||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|Project: E.O.E||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|Project: EXTREME||NetEase Games||NetEase Games|
|Project Mugen||NetEase Games
Licensed online games Edit
- Three-year agreement to license Blizzard's title Overwatch in PRC
- Agreement to license Mojang's Minecraft and Minecraft: Pocket Edition in China
- Will assume the publishing of EVE Online in the Chinese market starting in October 2018
Development studios Edit
|NetEase Games||Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hangzhou, China|
|Ouka Studio||Guangzhou, China|
|Grasshopper Manufacture||Tokyo, Japan|
|NetEase Games Tokyo|
|GPTRACK50 Studio||Osaka, Japan|
|Quantic Dream||Paris, France|
|Jackalyptic Games||Austin, Texas, USA|
|T-Minus Zero Entertaiment|
|Jar of Sparks||Seattle, Washington, USA|
|Anchor Point Studios||Seattle, Washington, USA and Barcelona, Spain|
|NetEase Games North America||Los Angeles, California, USA|
|NetEase Games Montreal||Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|SkyBox Labs||Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada|
|Bad Brain Game Studios||Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|NetEase Games Korea||Seongnam, South Korea|
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- Business data for NetEase: