GREE lays off U.S. staffers ahead of OpenFeint shutdown
Japanese gaming giant GREE is reorganizing its U.S. operations, sunsetting its OpenFeint mobile social platform and laying off staff.
GREE acquired OpenFeint in early 2011 for $104 million; the platform enables developers to integrate social gaming features like leaderboards and challenges into iOS and Android games. GREE will shut off the OpenFeint servers on Dec. 14, migrating users to its own servers and necessitating that developers update their games to remove OpenFeint features.
GREE said it will shift its platform business to its Tokyo headquarters, transitioning a majority of its U.S. games platform team to other departments "with redundancies in some areas." The Next Web reports 25 U.S. staffers will be let go--GREE confirmed the number but declined to offer additional details on the layoffs.
Moving forward, GREE will focus its U.S. efforts on developing mobile titles in house; recent releases include Monster Quest and MLB: Full Deck. The firm is also introducing a mobile investment fund managed by its new publishing and partnerships group. GREE is kicking off the fund by investing $3 million in MunkyFun, the startup behind titles like My Horse and Bounty Bots.
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