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Krafton is a game developer for PC and mobile devices that focuses on fantasy games.


Krafton, tylized as KRAFTON and formerly known as Bluehole and Krafton Game Union, is a South Korean company that develops and distributes video games based in Bundang-gu, Seongnam. Founded by Chang Byung-gyu in Seoul in March 2007, the company is known for having developed TERA, PUBG: Battlegrounds and PUBG: New State, the last two through its subsidiary PUBG Studios. In November 2018, Bluehole was reorganized as a subsidiary under a parent company: Krafton. According to Forbes, Chang has a net worth of $2.9 billion and is one of the seven gaming billionaires in South Korea.

Following the success of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds which had led to both investment from Tencent Holdings and expansion and acquisition of studios, Bluehole opted to establish Krafton on 5 November 2018 to serve as a holding company for its video game properties. "Krafton" was selected based on the names of craft guilds of the Middle Ages. Kim Chang-han, the CEO of the PUBG Corporation (current PUBG Studios) that developed PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, was named as CEO for Krafton. The company announced its plans to file for an initial public offering in July 2021, filing its initial approval for listing on the Korea Stock Exchange in April 2021. The firm plans to raise ₩5.6 trillion (US$5 billion) at a market valuation of ₩30 trillion (US$27.2 billion). The IPO was held on August 10, 2021; while its value dropped by 8.8% from the original asking price at the end of trading, it still ended with Krafton being valued at US$19.32 billion. Shares of several Chinese and foreign video game companies, including Tencent, which is the largest video game company in China and a provider for foreign companies to publish games in their country, fell due to new restrictions imposed by the Chinese government. Video games are viewed as an 'electronic drug' and a 'spiritual opium', especially shooting videogames, which according to the Chinese government promote violence. China is a very important market for video games due to its population density, hence the collapse of companies is devastating for every videogame company, including Krafton.


Bluehole Studio was founded in Seoul in March 2007 by Chang Byung-gyu. Chang previously established Neowiz in 1997, along seven other co-founders, moved on to found search engine developer First Snow in 2005, and sold that venture in 2006. The company announced on 22 April 2015 that they had changed their name to simply Bluehole. In August 2017, Chinese holding company Tencent announced that it had, following a rejected acquisition bid, invested an undisclosed amount of money into Bluehole. Bluehole initially denied that any investment had been made, but later stated that they were in talks with Tencent in multiple partnerships, including the acquisition of an equity stake in Bluehole by Tencent. Subsequently, Tencent acquired 1.5% of Bluehole for a total of ₩70 billion. Tencent reaffirmed their intents to fully acquire Bluehole in November 2017. Korean magazine The Korea Times suggested that an initial public offering, through which Bluehole would become a public company, was "out of question" due to Chang Byung-gyu's position as chairman of both Bluehole and the Fourth Industrial Revolution committee. At the time, 38 Communications, a company that tracks unlisted Korean stocks, valued the company at ₩5.2 trillion. Tencent plans to invest further ₩500 billion to acquire further 10% ownership, raising their total stake to 11.5%.

PUBG Studios (formerly Ginno Games, Bluehole Ginno Games and PUBG Corporation) is an internal studio of Bluehole's that developed one of the establishing battle royale games, PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG), based on user mods in other games by Brendan "PlayerUnknown" Greene and who was hired by PUBG Studios to develop it into a full title. Originally, Ginno Games had been founded by Kim Chang-han to develop MMOs, but around 2014, he had been forced to lay off a third of his staff as their last product had not performed well. He sold Ginno Games to Bluehole on 27 January 2015, with the sale to close on 27 March that year. At the time, Ginno Games employed 60 people. Ginno Games changed their corporate name to Bluehole Ginno Games in May 2015. Shortly after Bluehole's acquisition in 2015, Chang-ha reached out to Greene to offer him support to build out his battle royale at Bluehole Ginno, which Greene accepted. PUBG was first released in early access in March 2017 as a highly popular game. Following the success of PUBG in 2017, Bluehole Ginno Games was renamed PUBG Corporation in September 2017. A second office was established in Madison, Wisconsin in late 2017, with two further offices in Amsterdam and Japan opened later. On 12 March 2018, PUBG Corporation acquired New York-based studio MadGlory, which was renamed PUBG MadGlory. Greene, having been based in the Seoul offices of PUBG Corporation, left that division in March 2019 to lead a new subsidiary, PUBG Special Projects, at the Amsterdam office, later renamed to PUBG Productions. PUBG Productions announced their first game Prologue at The Game Awards 2019 in December. Unrelated to Battlegrounds, Prologue is called an exploration of gameplay and technology, and said "to give players unique and memorable experiences, each and every time they play". At the end of 2019 Tencent announced some big plans for PUBG in India's upcoming future, as well as its general eSports.

Krafton fully merged PUBG Corporation into their internal studio system in December 2020, rebranding the team as PUBG Studios. On November 9, 2020, it was announced that Krafton will participate in G-Star 2020 to introduce their upcoming multiplayer online game Elyon through Krafton, an e-sports reality show where celebrities and streamers entered a special school that specialized in battlegrounds conduct episodes and talk related to PUBG Series 3. Celebrities (G)I-dle's Song Yuqi and Ailee and streamers Chyo Man and Choi Kwang-won appeared in the show. In September 2020, the Government of India banned PUBG Mobile in the country along with several apps published by Chinese vendors, in this case Tencent, due to data privacy issues. To relaunch the game back in India, Krafton took back the control of Intellectual Property (IP) of the game for the Indian region from Tencent. An aesthetically new version of PUBG Mobile, Battlegrounds Mobile India, was launched on 2 July 2021 for Android and on 18 August 2021 for iOS. This time the game was published by Krafton, Inc. In February 2021, PUBG Studios announced the development of PUBG: NEW STATE, the sequel to PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS set in the future (2051). Drones, shields, weapon customization, neon sights, reviving teammates and 'recruiting' knocked out enemies are just some of the new mechanics in PUBG: NEW STATE. At the end of October, Krafton publicly announced through a trailer that the game would be released on November 11, 2021, and reported through a presentation that to date the game had exceeded 50 million pre-registrations on Google Play and App Store, beating a record of pre-registrations.

Striking Distance Studios

In June 2019, a new studio called Striking Distance was opened in conjunction with Glen Schofield, the co-founder of Sledgehammer Games. Striking Distance, headed by Schofield as chief executive officer, is set to develop narrative-driven games based on PUBG. The studio's first game is The Callisto Protocol, a survival horror game set within the PUBG universe. It is set to be released in 2022. Striking Distance Studios is headquartered in San Ramon, California.


RisingWings is a game development company formed by the merger of Pnix and Delusion. RisingWings is responsible for Archery King, Golf King, Castle Craft: World War and other mobile games. RisingWings in based in Seoul.

And other...


July 15, 2021
Krafton announces Battlegrounds Mobile India Series 2021, the first open eSports tournament for BGMI players.
November 2017
Tencent reaffirmed their intents to fully acquire Bluehole in November 2017.
Chang previously established Neowiz in 1997, along seven other co-founders, moved on to found search engine developer First Snow in 2005, and sold that venture in 2006

Funding Rounds



Further Resources



September 9, 2021
About | Advertise | Contact | Disclaimer | News | The Daily Deal Newsletter by FinSMEs is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Ishan Patra
August 21, 2021
The Hindu
Here's our curated list of important tech news from this week in byte size.
August 19, 2021
HT Tech
Battlegrounds Mobile India iOS: BGMI, is finally available for download on Apple iPhone and iPad, nearly a month and a half after it was released for Android smartphones. Here's how to download this PUBG Mobile India game on your iOS device.
August 16, 2021
The Indian Express
Battlegrounds Mobile India launched for Android devices on July 2, but is yet to be available for iOS devices.
August 13, 2021
HT Tech
Battlegrounds Mobile India has crossed 49 million downloads since officially launching on July 2.


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