Looking back on Vietnam GameVerse 2023: Igniting the Rise of the Vietnamese Gaming Industry

Vietnam GameVerse 2023 has come to a conclusion, but the excitement around the event has not subsided. It can be claimed that the event ushered in a new era, laying the groundwork for the rapid growth of Vietnam’s gaming industry in the future. Let’s take a look at the highlights of Vietnam GameVerse 2023:

About Vietnam GameVerse 2023

Vietnam GameVerse 2023 is the first event dedicated to game publishers and enthusiasts, co-organized by the Department of Radio, Television, and Electronic Information – under the Ministry of Information and Communications, VnExpress online newspaper, and the Vietnam Game Union. The event occurred at the Phu Tho Sports Hall in Ho Chi Minh City on April 1st and 2nd. 

This is the first time Vietnam GameVerse 2023 was being held with the aim of providing a healthy playground for gamers to meet and exchange experiences, creating an environment for game production and distribution companies to introduce and promote their products, and opening up opportunities to connect domestic and foreign game companies with investors. At the same time, this is also a place to discuss policies, mechanisms, and issues of concern between state management agencies and units in the game industry.

According to statistics released by VnExpress on March 31, more than 5,000 people have registered to participate in GameVerse 2023 online, and the event was expected to attract over 15,000 people, including industry leaders and experts.

GameVerse 2023 attracted thousands of young people and gamers to participate. Source: VNGGames

The event programs

Event participants included: VNG, Microsoft, Acer, VTC, Garena, Funtap, 9Pay, Gamota, OTA Network, Yomost, Momo, Gosu, ROXCE, Virtuous, Travellet, Sohagame, Ocany, BenQ, WINK

Vietnam Game Forum: Identifying difficulties, taking on challenges

One of the highlights of the game forum was the discussion on the topic “Identifying difficulties, taking on challenges: Developing policies and human resources to position the Vietnamese gaming industry on the global map.” The discussion had the participation of government leaders and leading experts such as Mr. Le Quang Tu Do, Director of the Department of Radio, Television and Electronic Information, Mr. Mai Van Ninh – Director of Platform Development, VNG Joint Stock Company, Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Bao – General Director of VTC Multimedia Company, Mr. Thai Thanh Liem – CEO of Topebox, and Mr. Dao Quang Tuan – Director of Funtap game business.

Leaders and experts were discussing in the Vietnam Game Forum 2023

Overview of the Global and Vietnamese Gaming Market

During the discussion “Identifying difficulties, taking on challenges,” experts shared that according to a report by Newzoo, as of November 2022, the global gaming industry had reached $184.4 billion in revenue. It is predicted that the global gaming market will reach $211.2 billion in revenue by 2024. The Southeast Asia region has a very high growth rate compared to the global average, but the revenue of the mobile gaming market in each country in the Southeast Asia region has uneven development and is not proportional to the number of players in each country. Vietnam ranks third in the number of mobile gamers in the region with 54.6 million players, but the revenue is still modest compared to the correlation with the number of players, at $507 million.

Regarding esports, Newzoo predicted that the global esports revenue would reach $1.598.2 billion, with a growth rate of 15.5% in 2023. The revenue sources of esports primarily come from Sponsorship, Licensing, Advertising, and Ticket Sales for tournaments. The attractive profit margin has made esports a highly watched field in many countries recently, even creating new careers for young people with potential earnings of up to thousands of USD per month. Middle Eastern countries have even established special zones with policy incentives to promote electronic game production companies after realizing that this industry could replace oil as the new “black gold.”

Vietnamese game industry’s opportunities

The Vietnamese gaming industry has several advantages for rapid development, attracting the attention of major investors from China, Korea, and the United States. Vietnam’s game-creation workforce is proficient, with strong programming skills and hardworking. With the official commercialization of 5G, Vietnam will be able to entirely accelerate the growth of the domestic video game sector, allowing it to export to the rest of the world.

In addition to the above advantages, Mr. Simon Yu, director of Kirin Capital’s Game Investment Fund, also shared at GameVerse 2023, on the topic “Decoding the perspective of foreign investors into the Vietnamese game industry”: Vietnam’s economy is growing rapidly, with a golden population structure, an abundance of IT human resources, and an entrepreneurial mindset. Furthermore, the government’s promotion of digital transformation, protection of the domestic game industry from developing quality products, and creation of a foundation for the export of digital content products are all highly favorable factors for the gaming industry’s development.

Vietnamese game industry’s challenges

In the forum, experts shared that the biggest challenge of the game industry is that businesses have not joined together and have not taken advantage of each other to develop. Along with that, the policy for the game industry still has many shortcomings and social prejudices against the game industry.
Besides, Kirin Capital realized that game companies in Vietnam are also facing difficulties in raising capital, and having limitations in accessing resources from abroad such as products, high-quality personnel, and modern technologies.

The revenue of the Vietnamese game industry can reach more than 1 billion USD

Kirin Capital jointly participated in the “Decoding investment fund perspective about Vietnam game market” talk show within the Vietnam GameVerse 2023. Mr. Simon Yu, Director of Kirin Capital’s Game Investment Fund, Mr. Pham Van Thanh, Director of VTC Game, and Ms. Ealing Ng, Sales Director of Aptoide, provided in-depth perspectives and insights about Vietnam’s game market, its development potential, as well as investment and capital raising issues for Vietnamese businesses and start-ups.

At the seminar, Mr. Simon Yu made a prediction about the potential of Vietnam’s game industry based on the country’s current advantages. Accordingly, the revenue of the Vietnamese game industry could reach more than 1 billion USD within 3-5 years. This prediction of Kirin Capital is also in line with the target set by the Vietnamese government for the revenue of this industry.

Through the seminar, the leader of Kirin Capital’s Game Investment Fund also sent investment signals to the Vietnamese game industry, conveying the desire to discover and accompany startup entrepreneurs with high capacity and sensitivity to the market.

Kirin Capital not only provides capital but also brings the successful experience and resources of global companies to Vietnam, helps businesses develop products, and supports Vietnamese businesses to explore the global market.

Kirin Capital participated in the seminar “Decoding the perspective of foreign investors in the Vietnamese game market”

The insights shared by Mr. Simon Yu, CEO of the Kirin Capital’s Game Investment Fund, was quickly published on VnExpress ‘s homepage and also re-posted by Cong Nghe. This is a great motivation for Vietnamese game companies and governing bodies to have more confidence in the brilliant development prospects of the Vietnamese game industry.

Kirin Capital appeared on the homepage of VnExpress as an expert perspective

2023 Vietnam Game Awards (VGA 2023)

The results of the Vietnam Game Awards 2023 (VGA 2023) within GameVerse 2023 also showcased the highlights of the Vietnamese gaming industry at the present time.

Mr. Le Quang Tu Do, Director of Radio, Television and Electronic Information presented the Game of the Year award to Free Fire

In categories such as Golden Star Award, Game of the Year, Outstanding Mobile Game, and Outstanding Esports Game, the award-winning units were well-known titles such as Freefire, I Am Dao Si Xuat Quan, Play Together, AU2, Liên Quân Mobile, Gunny Origin, Crossfire, and Pubg Mobile, indicating that Vietnamese players prefer shooting, role-playing, and simulation games.

In the award category for games with beautiful graphic design, Tinh Kiem 3D, Tru Tien 3D, and Vo Lam Truyen Ky Max were highly rated and won prestigious awards, demonstrating that games with Chinese martial arts and fairy tale themes are still popular among Vietnamese gamers.

According to experts in the gaming industry, prior to 2018, the most popular payment method among gamers was through phone cards. Some MMORPG game publishers reported that revenue from phone card payments accounted for nearly 80% of their total revenue. However, this change came after the sudden halt of phone card payments by telecommunication companies for electronic games. Other payment methods such as In-App Purchases (IAP), direct bank transfers, e-wallets, game cards, SMS, and Visa card payments have been becoming more popular.

The award for the most popular payment channel revealed the appearance of three e-wallets in the Vietnamese market: Momo, 9Pay, and ZaloPay. Surpassing direct bank transfers and game cards, e-wallets have made their way onto the list of the most popular payment methods among Vietnamese gamers. This highlights the rapid development and high level of localization of e-wallet payment channels in Vietnam.

Electronic games in particular and the digital economy in general are bringing significant value that cannot be denied. GameVerse 2023 has brought together leaders, industry experts, gaming companies, and investment funds such as Kirin Capital, making it the largest gaming event ever held in Vietnam. It has contributed to the development of the Vietnamese gaming industry in a positive, healthy direction, creating many positive values for society, communities, and the economy.