PUBG creator Kim Chang-han is planning an IPO (Initial Offering or Listing) which is expected to reach up to $ 27,2 billion.
Kim has been described as their "mind" computers, winning national competitions coding in the South Korea in the 1980s. In particular, at the age of 10, he won a personal computer competition organized by the South Korean Ministry of Science and claimed many other national coding awards.
In 2009 he co-founded Ginno Games, while participating in two other startups.
However, in 2014 Kim reached the lowest point of his life. In particular, he fired one third of the employees who worked at Gaming his startup. In addition, since 2000, he has created three multiplayer online games in three startups, all of which ultimately failed. Kim said it was the worst time of his life.
A year later, he sold his company to what is now Krafton Inc., to which he joined as executive producer. Then Kim's fate began to change. As a last resort in business, decided to develop an online battle game, where players compete with each other on an ever-shrinking battlefield.
In addition, Kim persuaded Irishman Brendan Greene to join the company and move to South Korea as the game's creative director.
Bluehole Inc., as Krafton was called at the time, released PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, (or PUBG) in 2017. PUBG is one of the most successful games of all time, with PC and PC versions. consoles to sell more than 70 million copies, while the version for cell phones has been downloaded over 600 million times.
The company is now planning an IPO that could be the largest in South Korea in years. The sale of the shares could raise billions of dollars, said Kim, who became CEO of Krafton last year, in an interview in Seoul, but declined to give further details.
The IPO could estimate the company at 30 trillion won ($ 27,2 billion), according to a report by the Eugene Investment & Securities Co. notified on 5 January.
South Korea is set to raise up to $ 10,9 billion (a record) through more than 120 IPOs this year. KakaoBank Corp. and LG Chem Ltd. are expected to make initial stock sales in 2021, according to the report. The rise in IPOs comes after the South Korean benchmark gained 34% in the last 12 months, one of the best performances in the world.
The biggest IPO in the country was the offer of Samsung Life Insurance Co. $ 4,3 billion in 2010. This was followed by the $ 2,4 billion listing of Netmarble Corp., a Seoul-based gaming company, in 2017.
Krafton operates four game studios, with PUBG accounting for the vast majority of its sales and profits, according to Kim.
Kim also said that the company is now working on an animated show that will be uploaded to streaming services and a web cartoon. The company is open to acquisitions in these areas, Kim said.
Krafton founder Chang Byung-gyu is the largest shareholder with a 17% stake, followed by Tencent Holdings Ltd., which holds 16%. Kim has a 1,5% stake.
Kim is determined to expand the company's gaming repertoire. So the company plans to release a new Battle Royale Mobile title this year based on PUBG, another PUBG-related PC game and console until next year, and a 2022 survival horror game depicting its universe. PUBG three centuries later.