Chinese online gaming company NetEase has launched a new studio in Montreal, Canada. The studio – which is based in “Canada’s premier video game production center” Montréal Quebec – will be R&D-focused and plans to hire “local and international talent”.
“Global expansion is of great importance to the strategic growth of NetEase’s online games business. We have made considerable progress in recent years, and our new Montréal games studio is another significant milestone for our global market ambitions,” William Ding, CEO and director of NetEase, said via a press release.
“Known for being a world-leading video game and entertainment content production hub, with rich resources in talent and technologies, Montréal offers clear advantages and favorable conditions to international online games companies such as NetEase. We were warmly welcomed by Montréal International and Investissement Québec, and we are thrilled at this remarkable step which can push us forward on realizing our global objectives.”
The new studio has been supported by Montréal International, “Greater Montréal’s economic promotion agency”. Hubert Bolduc, president and CEO of Montréal International, added: “We cordially welcome the arrival of NetEase, the first major game publisher and developer from China to establish an office here, which confirms Greater Montréal’s enviable position as a world leader in the video game industry.
“Since 2015, the Québec video game industry has experienced a phenomenal 42 per cent growth in the number of companies establishing roots or expanding here, with the world’s largest video games producers successively choosing the city for its creative, vibrant and artistic culture.”
In other NetEase news, the company also confirmed it recently acquired a minority stake in Dead By Daylight developer, Behaviour Interactive. Describing the company as “Canada’s largest independent video game developer”, NetEase confirms the Montreal-based developer will “continue to operate independently” under president and executive producer, Rémi Racine, although NetEase Games will nominate a director to Behaviour’s Board.
“NetEase’s investment validates the reputation for excellence and efficiency we have built in the online games sector over the last 27 years,” Racine said. “At Behaviour, we are continuously looking for opportunities to accelerate growth by investing in R&D for new and innovative games for our players and in the recruitment of exceptional talent. As an industry leader in online games, NetEase brings highly reputable R&D and operational capabilities and experience that we believe will drive sustainable, long-term growth well into the future.”