RuneScape’s roots go back ten years, to 2001 where the game was a simple at home project by Andrew Gower. With the Gowers now mostly absent (they resigned from the Board of Directors in December 2010), the torch has been passed to Mark Gerhard to keep the developer moving in its upward trend. Granted, Jagex has multiple MMOs in production (Stellar Dawn and Transformers Online, to name just the two slated for release this year), so the rise in revenue but dip in profits reported for 2010-2011 was to be expected at some extent.
But fret not, investors and gamers. To the former, Jagex isn’t some cheap floozy willing to take just anyone’s money. In an interview with Games Industry, Mark Gerhard wants to set the record straight that Jagex dates very, very selectively.
Nothing has changed as far as the company goes. It’s the same management team, we’ve obviously been at the helm for quite some time and to the best of our knowledge and expectation it will continue to be so. Sure we therefore have some American shareholders, but the management and the culture and the ethos and everything else is the same people, in the same hands, and staunchly British.
Gerhard attributes the dip in profits to Jagex investing more in the company instead of paying dividends, a move which apparently began around the time Insight Ventures attained 55% ownership in Jagex (end of 2010). He also paints a picture that, regardless of the shift in majority ownership, nothing has changed at Jagex since Insight Ventures took the majority vote.
Jagex has quite an interesting year ahead of it, what with continued investment in RuneScape, the recent launch of their HTML-based game 8Realms, and the upcoming launches of Transformers Online and Stellar Dawn.
(Source: Gamesindustry.biz) You’ll need to be registered to view the article.