GREE sues rival DeNA for blocking cross-platform mobile game developers
Japanese mobile game platform GREE is suing rival DeNA, claiming the firm is obstructing developers who attempt to roll out their titles across both companies' networks.
The suit alleges that DeNA has blocked developers from submitting games to the GREE platform by threatening to remove their efforts from its own network. In June, the Japan Fair Trade Commission ordered DeNA to stop blocking developers from listing their games on competing platforms and instructed the company to implement more flexible policies moving forward--GREE alleges that DeNA has continued its practices despite the government order.
The GREE suit, filed Monday, seeks $14 million in damages as well as an end to DeNA's practices. Joining GREE in the suit is Japanese mobile operator KDDI, which seeks a small portion of the damages, citing the impact of DeNA's policies on the GREE platform, which it offers to subscribers. DeNA issued a statement declining comment until it examines the contents of the suit.
Earlier this year, GREE acquired mobile social gaming network OpenFeint for $104 million. The OpenFeint network spans more than 7,000 games and 115 million registered users. DeNA entered the U.S. market by snapping up mobile game developer ngmoco for $400 million in late 2010. In August 2011, ngmoco announced an agreement to roll out its Mobage platform to Android device users via AT&T (NYSE:T), heralding its first Mobage partnership with a U.S. wireless operator.
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