DeNA Co., Japan's biggest developer of social games for mobile phones, may partner with Facebook Inc. or Zynga Game Network Inc. as the company seeks to expand overseas, Chief Executive Officer Tomoko Namba said.
"There's a real possibility of a marketing alliance with Facebook to grow our customer base, because they focus on real- world connections between people while we target virtual relationships," Namba said in an interview in Tokyo on Nov. 9. " Zynga could be a potential partner as a game developer for our platform," she said, without giving further details.
DeNA has more than 21 million users in Japan and aims to quadruple sales in four years by targeting U.S. consumers who use smartphones to play games. Shipments of game-capable handsets are set to rise 11 percent to 1.27 billion this year, according to market researcher iSuppli Corp.
Dani Dudeck, a spokeswoman for San Francisco-based Zynga, declined to comment on a potential tie-up. Jonathan Thaw, a spokesman for Palo Alto, California-based Facebook, didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
DeNA rose 1.1 percent to 2,479 yen as of 9:18 a.m. on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, extending its gain this year to 35 percent. The benchmark Nikkei 225 Stock Average lost 6.6 percent in the period.
DeNA's sales will climb to about 400 billion yen ($4.9 billion) in the year ending March 2015 from an estimated 100 billion yen this fiscal year, Namba said at a briefing on Nov. 1. Overseas operations will account for about half the revenue, compared with almost zero now, she said at the time.
DeNA earlier this month reported net income rose 17 percent to 7.64 billion yen in the three months ended Sept. 30, as sales increased 12 percent to 27.1 billion yen. The company cited demand for virtual goods, in-game advertising and avatars, which accounted for about 86 percent of its sales in the quarter.
Subscribe to Daily Browser Games News!