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Startups

NPIXEL emerges as fastest Korean game company to become unicorn

The company will tap into Japan within this year on release of Gran Saga

By Sep 01, 2021 (Gmt+09:00)

NPIXEL's first game title, Gran Saga
NPIXEL's first game title, Gran Saga

South Korea-based game developer NPIXEL Co. has become the country’s fastest game company to join the unicorn club after raising 100 billion won ($86.4 million) in a recent Series B funding round and receiving a valuation of over 1 trillion won, according to the company on Aug. 31.

Last year, the company secured around 75 billion won in a Series A round from investors including venture capital firm Altos Ventures.

The company plans to use the proceeds for game development and overseas expansion, beginning with launching its leading game title Gran Saga in Japan within the year. 

NPIXEL was co-founded in 2017 by serial entrepreneurs Bae Bong-gun and Jeong Hyun-ho who previously established Nexus Games in 2013. Nexus Games was the creator of the popular game Seven Knights, which was distributed by the country’s major game company Netmarble Co. 

In 2015, Netmarble acquired Nexus Games, renamed as Netmarble Nexus. Following the acquisition, Bae and Jeong teamed up again to establish NPIXEL, drawing much attention from the game industry being another venture by the creators of Seven Knights.

Earlier in January, NPIXEL released its first game title, Gran Saga, which became the third-highest-grossing game app on Google’s app marketplace and the No. 1 highest-grossing game app on Apple’s App Store.

Moving forward, the company aims to grow as a global game company by firming up its game portfolio. NPIXEL is currently developing its next game title, Chrono Odyssey, an epic fantasy MMORPG game highly anticipated by game enthusiasts.

Write to Joo-wan Kim at kjwan@hankyung.com

Danbee Lee edited this article.

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