(SANTA CLARA, CA)– February 17, 2010– PlaySpan™, the global leader in monetization solutions for over 1,000 online games, virtual worlds, and social networks, today announced that its Ultimate Game Card® (UGC) has expanded into South Africa, Israel, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Taiwan.
This rapid growth makes Ultimate Game Card available in more than 70,000 international retail locations and in the world’s leading online games markets including Brazil, Canada, Portugal, Philippines, Turkey, and the Unites States. Globally, UGC is used by consumers to pay for premium content in over 300 multiplayer games and more than 700 games on Facebook and MySpace.
Through its partnership with Opengate, Ultimate Game Card will be available in more than 1,000 South Africa retail stores. Anton Maybery, Chief Executive Officer of Opengate commented:“We are excited that our distribution agreement with PlaySpan enables us to offer South African consumers direct access to PlaySpan’s extensive range of online games, virtual worlds, and social networks. We are confident that having immediate access to online entertainment will appeal to a broad spectrum of South Africa’s online population.”
Philip Cooper, Head of New Business Development for Opengate added:“Online gaming is still fairly new in South Africa due to the relative dominance of console and PC based games. Together with PlaySpan Inc., Opengate aims to create a sustainable online gaming market in South Africa by focusing on marketing and selling categories of games that will appeal to early adopters - tech savvy tweens, teens and young adults– a market that we believe has enormous growth potential and is ready to be tapped.”
PlaySpan has also partnered with the largest retail network of Game Cafes/Internet Cafes in Taiwan, which includes distribution to more than 5,000 retail locations and hundreds of Internet cafes. Taiwan is fast becoming one of the top 5 countries on Facebook and UGC is one of the best forms of payment for Taiwanese gamers for Facebook and other online games.
According to expert forecasts, revenue from Taiwan’s online game industry was around $350 million for 2009, while the free-to-play games market there has steadily matured, recently surpassing annual revenues derived from console games. In South Africa, developers face hurdles such as high distribution costs, which PlaySpan’s Ultimate Game Card helps them to overcome.
“All of these countries present monetization challenges for game developers and publishers,” said Karl Mehta, Founder&CEO of PlaySpan.“Our entrance into these new markets significantly expands our reach and enables our partners to generate new revenue streams while introducing their premium content to new customer bases. This significant expansion further solidifies our position as the global leader in enabling microtransactions and digital goods ecommerce.”
Through UltimatePay™, which provides over 85 payment methods in 180 countries, and Ultimate Game Card, PlaySpan has delivered rapid worldwide distribution to both large and small merchants and developers. The company continues to make strides and aggressively expand its global reach by working with the world’s largest international resellers who have distribution networks that link them directly with largest retail stores and Internet Cafés in their countries.
Opengate supplies products and services to the South African stored-value gift and prepaid card markets. Opengate is set to launch South Africa’s first gift card malls and marketing services that enable issuers of gift or prepaid cards (retail; online games; music; financial services and payment) to use third-party retailers as a distribution channel, through which to market and sell their product offering.
Opengate compliments its ability to supply its client-base with magnetic-stripe card product through the provision of creative design and artwork origination, personalisation of data and fulfillment services and secure warehousing and distribution capabilities.
For more information about Opengate please go to www.opengate.co.za
About PlaySpan Inc.
PlaySpan™ is the global leader in monetization solutions for over 1,000 online games, virtual worlds, and social networks. PlaySpan's patent-pending in-game digital goods commerce and micropayment platform enables game publishers and developers to generate new revenues, acquire new users, and extend the loyalty of existing users.
PlaySpan also offers global payment solutions through its subsidiary PayByCash® with 85 payment methods in 180 countries. The ULTIMATE GAME CARD® is used by consumers to pay for 300 multiplayer games and around 700 games on popular social networking sites. It is available in about 45,000 retail locations across North America and growing rapidly worldwide.
Social network payment solutions are available through Spare Change©. Acquired by PlaySpan in April 2009, Spare Change is the first and leading payments platform designed specifically for social networks. Featured on over 700 applications, across Facebook, MySpace, and Bebo, Spare Change empowers developers to successfully monetize their applications through micro payments. The Spare Change platform enables users to make safe, convenient, and friendly 1-click purchases through a variety of funding sources.
PlaySpan is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices in Charlottesville, Virginia, Cincinnati, Ohio, and Mumbai. Investors include Easton Capital, Menlo Ventures, STIC and Novel TMT Ventures. The company won the 2009 OnHollywood Category Award for Best Gaming Company.
For more information about PlaySpan, visit: http://corp.playspan.com
For more information about Spare Change, visit: www.sparechangepayments.com
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VSC PR for PlaySpan
Eric Gonzalez, 415-272-0836