Blizzard has extended its 11-year partnership with Chinese technology company NetEase, the company confirmed yesterday. A new deal will see games such as World of Warcraft, Diablo III, and Hearthstone continue to operate in the region until 2023.
The two companies have collaborated since 2008, when NetEase bought the license to distribute the popular strategy game Starcraft II to China, as well as launching the Blizard Battle.net platform.
J. Allen Brack, President of Blizzard Entertainment, said of the new:
“NetEase has been instrumental in helping us bring Blizzard’s epic games to even more players around the world, and we’re grateful to have such a strong partner in China. We look forward to continuing our relationship and cooperation in China and beyond.”
NetEase’s William Ding also stated that the “The scope of our collaboration is now deeper and broader than ever before. We’re confident that together we will continue to bring even more exciting game experiences to players worldwide.”
Blizzard is a subsidiary of Activision Blizzard, which made headlines earlier today after splitting with developer Bungie, makers of the hugely popular Destiny franchise. Bungie has retained the rights to publish the game, which failed to generate the sort of revenue figures Activision had initially forecasted.
Rumors of unrest within Blizzard surfaced late last year after growing concerns with Activision’s increasing influence. Supposedly, Blizzard has been put into a cost-saving mode of operation as Activision looks to streamline its operations amid internal shuffling.
Only last week, former Activision CFO Spencer Neumann confirmed that he left the company to work for Netflix.