A mobile game developer founded in Russia recorded record profits during the worldwide coronovirus lockdown, as more people downloaded the game to their homes, while one of its founders said. Playrix, based in Dublin since 2014, recorded 165 million downloads of its games between mid-March and mid-May, nearly double the two months before the epidemic, cofounder Igor Buchman said.

He said the company’s revenue grew 40 per cent to $ 46 million (about Rs 3,475 crore) in the last two-month period and stood at about Rs 100 crore (about Rs 7,556 crore) in the first five months of the year.

“We managed to get significantly more new users during this period,” Buchman told Reuters. “It is difficult to determine how much of this revenue was due to the lockdown, but we have record figures in the previous months.”

Gaming has been an area to benefit from coronovirus lockdown. Data analytics firm Sensor Tower showed that global mobile game downloads increased by 39 percent in February, with a large share of China’s growth.

The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on Playrix has begun to fade as it closes and business has resumed, but Bookman expects revenue to be “clearly higher” than in 2019 this year.

Playrix’s most popular games, including “Gardensides”, have simulation features to complete different tasks and challenge users.

Igor Buchman and his younger brother Dimitri founded Playrix in 2004 when they were students in the Russian city of Vologda, 400 kilometers (250 mi) north-east of Moscow.

Igor Buchman stated that Playrix has no immediate plans to float the shares, although that may happen in the future.

Bookman said the company has purchased 12 other gaming studios in recent years, hoping to have more acquisitions in 2020.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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