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.[6] NetEase has an on-demand music-streaming service (NetEase Music). The company also owns several pig farms.[7]

NetEase, Inc.
Netease logo 2.svg
Type of site
Traded asNasdaqNTES
NASDAQ-100 Component
FoundedJune 1997; 24 years ago (1997-06)
HeadquartersHangzhou, China[1] and George Town, Cayman Islands
Founder(s)Ding Lei
Key peopleDing Lei (CEO)
ProductsOnline services
RevenueIncrease CN¥ 59.24 billion (2019)[2]
Operating incomeIncrease CN¥ 13.79 billion (2019)[2]
Net incomeIncrease CN¥ 21.43 billion (2019)[2]
Total assetsIncrease CN¥ 112.12 billion (2019)[2]
Employees18,129 (December 2017)[3]
DivisionsNetEase YanXuan
NetEase Cloud Music
NetEase Games (Thunder Fire)
NetEase Games (Interactive Entertainment)
NetEase Games (Montreal)
NetEase D&R Center Lab
NetEase Wisdom Enterprise
NetEase News
SubsidiariesTitan Studio
Sakura Studio
Ouka Studio[4][5]
NetEase office in Hangzhou

NetEase video games include, the Westward Journey series, Tianxia III, Heroes of Tang Dynasty Zero, Ghost II,[8] Nostos and Onmyoji. NetEase also partners with Blizzard Entertainment to operate Chinese versions of their games, such as World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Overwatch.[9]


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.[10] In 2012 the company's official English name was changed from, Inc to NetEase, Inc.[11]

Early in the company's history, top executives quit amid possible ad revenue misreporting[12] and buy-out talks with i-Cable Communications and others were reported.[13]

In 2008, the domain attracted at least 1.8 million visitors annually by 2008 according to a survey.[14] In 2010 the site was the 28th most visited site in the world according to Alexa's internet rankings.[15] NetEase's official website address is 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.[16] NetEase is the largest provider of free e-mail services in China with more than 940 million users as of 2017. In addition to, the company also runs, and more.[17]

Expansion and acquisitionsEdit

NetEase launched their first Western Headquarters in August 2014, bringing one of the largest tech companies in China to the US.[18] In January 2020, NetEase discussed secondary listings with the Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing.[19]

In 2018 NetEase invested US$100 million into Bungie for a minority stake in the company and a seat on its board of directors.[20] In December of the same year NetEase invested in New Zealand developer A44 (Formally known as Aurora 44),[21] and it sold its comics business to Bilibili.[22] In 2019 NetEase obtained a minority stake in Quantic Dream for an undisclosed investment.[23]

In June 2020 NetEase established a Japanese studio called "Sakura Studio" to develop next-generation console games.[24][25]


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.[26] In April 2012, NetEase began testing a restaurant recommendation mobile app called "Fan Fan".[27][28] 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.[22]

The company collaborated with to provide Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) in China.[29] In 2014, NetEase launched an online course platform with educational content.[30]

Chinese government regulationEdit

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.[31]

Gamers trying the new release of Speedy Ninja at PAX 2015

Games developed or publishedEdit

NetEase publishes many mobile games, including Onmyōji, Fantasy Westward Journey, Cyber Hunter and Identity V.

Licensed online gamesEdit

  • Three-year agreement to license Blizzard's title Overwatch in PRC[32]
  • Agreement to license Mojang's Minecraft and Minecraft: Pocket Edition in China[33]
    • Operated the Chinese third-party Minecraft Hypixel server (which shut down)[34]
  • Will assume the publishing of EVE Online in the Chinese market starting in October 2018[35]
  • Developing Diablo Immortal for iOS and Android[36]
  • Developing The Lord of the Rings: Rise to War for iOS and Android.[37]
  • Developing Tom and Jerry: Chase for iOS and Android.[38]


  1. ^ "IR Contacts NetEase, Inc".
  2. ^ a b c d "NetEase Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2019 Unaudited Financial Results (PDF)". 26 February 2020.
  3. ^ "Investor FAQs". Archived from the original on March 22, 2019. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  4. ^ "CREATIVE DESTRUCTION Trademark of HONG KONG NETEASE INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT LIMITED Serial Number: 87884773 :: Trademarkia Trademarks".
  5. ^ "Creative Destruction on Steam".
  6. ^ "Tencent leads the top 25 public game companies with $10.2 billion in revenues | GamesBeat".
  7. ^ Bao, Zhiming; Jia, Denise (September 21, 2019). "Chinese Gaming Giant NetEase to Raise More Pigs". Caixin. Retrieved 2019-09-24.
  8. ^ "NetEase Q2 earnings beat expectations with online game services reversing downtrend - ChinaKnowledge". August 9, 2018.
  9. ^ Minotti, Mike (11 January 2019). "Blizzard and NetEase extend Chinese publishing deal for Hearthstone, Overwatch, and more". Venture Beat. Retrieved 18 May 2021.
  10. ^ "Netease Search Engine - Youdao/yodao spider". 2008-12-31. Retrieved 2012-08-17.
  11. ^ "NetEase English Name Changes" (in Chinese). March 29, 2012. Retrieved March 29, 2012.
  12. ^ Lu Stout, Kristie (June 12, 2001). " - Key Netease executives call it quits".
  13. ^ Ong, Carolyn (9 June 2001). "Another suitor linked with NetEase buyout". South China Morning Post. Archived from the original on 14 Mar 2021.
  14. ^ us Data Only (2011-10-26). "". Archived from the original on 2011-08-13. Retrieved 2012-08-17.
  15. ^ "Alexa Top 500 Global Sites". Retrieved 2010-04-15.
  16. ^ Beam, Christopher (May 1, 2014). "The Secret Messages Inside Chinese URLs". The New Republic. Retrieved February 1, 2016.
  17. ^ NetEase Q2 2017: Revenue Grows to $2 Billion, Games Generate $1.4bn], Chris Wray, WCCFTECH, Aug 10, 2017
  18. ^ "NetEase North America". Retrieved 2015-10-16.
  19. ^ "Hong Kong Bourse Discusses New Listings With Ctrip, Netease"
  20. ^ "Bungie gets more than $100 million investment from NetEase". June 1, 2018. Retrieved June 1, 2018.
  21. ^ "AURORA44 LIMITED (4672299) Registered". New Zealand Companies Office. December 17, 2018.
  22. ^ a b Zen Soo; Zheping Huang (13 December 2018). "Chinese gaming giant NetEase sells comics business to rival Bilibili, retains rights to Marvel series". South China Morning Post. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  23. ^ McWhertor, Michael (January 29, 2019). "Quantic Dream receives investment from NetEase to develop next-gen games". Polygon. Retrieved January 29, 2019.
  24. ^ [NetEase Games has today announced the establishment of 🌸"Sakura Studio"🌸 ..] (press release), NetEase, 5 Jun 2020
  25. ^ Kerr, Chris (5 Jun 2020), "Chinese game company NetEase has opened a new studio in Japan",
  26. ^ Futter, Mike (January 11, 2019). "Blizzard and NetEase extend Chinese publishing partnership for World of Warcraft, Diablo, more".
  27. ^ "Follow news on, Inc" (Press release). BrightWire. Archived from the original on 2013-01-19. Retrieved 2012-08-17.
  28. ^ "Netease Begins Testing for Mobile App "Fan Fan" on Thursday". BrightWire. Archived from the original on 2012-07-27.
  29. ^ "Coursera partners with NetEase to deliver free online learning in China".
  30. ^ Xiang, Tracey (24 April 2014). "NetEase Adds an Online Course Platform to Its Education Offerings". TechNode.
  31. ^ "China's internet censorship goes far beyond the Great Firewall". South China Morning Post. 2020-10-16. Retrieved 2020-11-11.
  32. ^ "NetEase - Fact Sheet". Archived from the original on 2019-03-22. Retrieved 2015-10-16.
  33. ^ "Minecraft is coming to China".
  34. ^ "Hypixel is coming to China".
  35. ^ "The Next Step For EVE China & Serenity – Announcing Partnership With NetEase!". EVE Online. Retrieved 2018-08-01.
  36. ^ Moyen, Motek (19 November 2018). "'Diablo Immortal' Is An Imminent Strong Tailwind For NetEase". Seeking Alpha. Retrieved 10 May 2019.
  37. ^ Naik, Kshiteej (17 June 2020). "The Lord of the Rings: Rise to War Mobile Game Announced". IGN. Retrieved 27 June 2020.
  38. ^ "Tom and Jerry Chase is released in 10 Countries: Here's how to download it anywhere". GamingonPhone. 2020-08-21. Retrieved 2021-06-05.

External linksEdit