ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok, is set to make a significant exit from the gaming sector, with plans to cut hundreds of jobs and wind down its gaming brand Nuverse, as reported by Bloomberg This move represents a substantial retreat from the gaming industry, marking a victory for rival Tencent Holdings Ltd
According to sources familiar with the matter, ByteDance will terminate several hundred employees, discontinue projects under development, and explore potential sales of existing gaming titles.
The company is expected to officially announce these measures on Monday. ByteDance’s decision to exit the gaming sector is considered its most substantial withdrawal from an industry that was once booming but dominated by Tencent and NetEase Inc.
ByteDance, known for its popular short video platforms TikTok and Douyin, has gradually scaled back its gaming ambitions after struggling to gain market share from Tencent.
The company is reportedly considering selling Shanghai Moonton Technology Co., a gaming studio it acquired for $4 billion in 2021.
ByteDance’s foray into gaming was part of its broader expansion strategy, which included acquiring studios and exclusive distribution rights to titles.
However, the gaming industry is known for its volatility, and ByteDance began to shutter in-house studios and reduce development jobs last year. The company has since refocused on core businesses like short video and e-commerce.
ByteDance’s spokesperson has not responded to requests for comments on the shutdown of Nuverse, which was first reported by Reuters. The company recently cut almost a quarter of its staff at its virtual reality arm, Pico.
Despite ByteDance’s efforts in the gaming sector, Tencent remains the dominant leader in the industry, benefiting from extensive user traffic through its messaging service WeChat and amassing a large content library through strategic acquisitions both in China and internationally.
(With input from agencies)