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Indie Developers in South Korea Move to Global Monetization

Posted Aug 4, 2016

A few weeks ago, AdColony’s Korea team has held its inaugural event, titled the “AdColony Space 2016 with Indie” at Park Ruan in Gangnam district, Seoul.

Korea is one of the fastest growing markets in the mobile industry and fourth largest game market in the world. Yet building relationships with major developers and publishers is important, small-medium sized mobile game developers, a.k.a. indie developers, are another major target with biggest growth potential.

During pre-registration for the event, we asked the indie developers to take a short survey on their game publishing plans for 2016.

According to this survey, 90% are interested in monetization through mobile advertising if it helps drive IAP revenue as well (the rewarded video model) 56% of respondents are already capturing revenue through advertising.

With respect to app promotion, 70% are considering a global launch for either a casual, action or arcade game. Last but not least, more than two thirds of respondents stated their main target market is outside Korea.

(Event pre-registration survey. 68% of 198 indie game developers indicated their target market as global.)

The goal of AdColony Space 2016 with Indie is to help indie developers in the region succeed globally with sessions by external industry experts focusing on strategic planning, investment and monetization.


To welcome the 140 indie developers who filled the venue, our CEO Will Kassoy opened the event with a warm video greeting from the Los Angeles, California headquarters.

Afterward, our GM of Korea, Injun Jung offered a short greeting, expressing his “hope this event helps indie developers to prepare long-term monetization plan and to develop as many games as they want.”

Jeein Kim, CEO of Grampus, shared insights on how to go global and survive in North America market. Kim suggested developers focus on social casino titles, since the contents do not have to be constantly updated, suiting companies with less manpower.


Bumjoon Lee, Director of Union Investment Partners shared insights from an investor’s point of view, noting that the game industry has been the most profitable for investors despite the current economic downturn. Lee also said that since many investors are sensitive to trends, and since many focus on specific genres, it’s important for developers to focus on genres at large, not just specific trends.

Based on the survey results, Injun introduced how to succeed with both advertising and IAP revenue at the same time using AdColony in-app purchase (IAP) video promotion and cross promotion. These are some of the most useful advertising implementations independent developers might take into their games.

Jung emphasized the opportunity in the global market for all developers, since the average revenue per daily active user (ARPDAU) of global developers is 63% higher than ARPDAU of domestic Korean developers.

Last but not least, Jaesoo Cha, manager of BitMango, explained how to target the North American and European market. He advised developers to analyze and plan their marketing efforts based on data and not to be afraid to fail.

After the sessions, developers were treated to a buffet and networking party. The AdColony team spent quality face-to-face time with developers to listen to what indie developers are having problems with, what they really need, and how AdColony can help them succeed.

Attendees were also offered a special promotion exclusive to developers newly integrating the AdColony SDK.

Thanks to Epic Games and TUNE for sponsoring the AdColony Space 2016 with Indie event.

More from Korea
Stay tuned for more events and region-specific insights from AdColony Korea, as we look for other opportunities to understand what developers want and how we can help them expand their business on a global scale. Until then, to get the latest AdColony mobile news and updates, follow  on Twitter, like us on Facebook, or connect on Linkedin.

Yoohyun (Karen) Kim
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