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Isao Moriyasu, CEO of DeNA: Let’s play ball!


Up for today’s Global Mobile Internet Conference 2012 speakers preview is Isao Moriyasu, CEO of DeNA.

Although Isao has only stepped up to the plate as CEO of DeNA since June 2011, he has been with DeNA since the founding year 1999. Isao started out at DeNA as a system engineer and founded online auction service BIDDERS and over the years held multiple positions, ultimately becoming the COO in April 2010 and then replacing Tomoko Namba as CEO in 2011.

The Japanese mobile gaming company DeNA, which started out in the online auction business, can now also be found in the fields of mobile auction, mobile advertising, mobile SNS and social gaming. DeNA’s social gaming platform Mobage (before known as Mobagetown) is the largest social gaming platform in Japan and DeNA fuels its platform by acquiring game developers to also develop content by itself.

In the beginning of 2012 the Yokohama BayStars Baseball Club were acquired by DeNA and are now playing under the name of Yokohama DeNA BayStars. Why a mobile gaming company would buy a professional baseball team is probably the question on your mind, but the answer might not be so far sought as you think. Like Red Bull, DeNA made this move to create synergies between the sports scene and its social gaming business and of course enhance its brand. If this new way to promote a mobile business will actually pay off is to be seen, but it does show that mobile business knows no boundaries.


China has been on DeNA’s target list for awhile now, and they have made some interesting deals to bring their  games and their Mobage platform to mobile phones in China (Alibaba, NetDragon, Sina, Baidu, etc.).  Gaming platforms are numerous in China, and waging a battle to become and maintain a position as the largest distribution channel is no easy endeavor.  If gaming platforms in China are considered a battlefield, dominating the gaming market itself is a full scale theater of war.

This competition means they are going to have to break some molds if they are going to achieve this goal – the question we’re hoping Moriyasu will directly address is how DeNA will do this.

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