Online game operator Beijing Perfect World Co Ltd is preparing to list on the NASDAQ in the second quarter, company sources said.
"We plan to hold the share offer in the second quarter of this year," said a company source, who asked not to be named because the company has entered its silent period. The source declined to reveal further details such as the company's underwriter or fundraising volume.
The Beijing-based company was established in 2004 and launched its first 3D online game "Perfect World" in early 2005. The firm said it had amassed over 1 million players by last December with its three games "Legend of Martial Arts", "Perfect World" and "Perfect World International Edition".
The company will launch another 3D online game "Zhu Xian" this year and plans to further expand into the overseas market.
In late 2006, C&C Media Research Laboratories, a Japanese online gaming company, paid Beijing Perfect World $2 million to operate its game in Japan. The Beijing-based company said it would operate its game in other markets such as South Korea and Taiwan.
The gaming company reportedly secured an $8 million investment last September from SAIF Partners, a Beijing-based venture capital firm.
SAIF was the sole investor in Shanda Interactive Entertainment Ltd before the online game operator's initial public offering in 2005. The firm later achieved a 14-fold return from the NASDAQ listing of Shanda, China's largest online gaming provider.
Officials from SAIF were unavailable for comment.
A slew of local gaming operators are gearing up for overseas share offers this year to help them carve a niche in China's fledgling online gaming sector.
Shanghai-based online game company Zhengtu Games is preparing for a listing in the second half of the year. The company said its "Zhengtu Online" had drawn more than 600,000 players during peak time. Meanwhile, Zhengtu Games will launch its second online game "Ju Ren" this year.
China's online games market has experienced a boom in the past few years and an increasing number of local operators are trying to tap the nation's massive player population.
China's online games market expanded 73.5 percent to 6.54 billion yuan in 2006, according to an annual report by market researcher IDC.
Source: China Daily