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NetEase, Inc.
FoundedJune 1997; 25 years ago (1997-06)
FounderDing Lei
HeadquartersHangzhou, Zhejiang, China[1]
Key people
Ding Lei (CEO)
ProductsOnline services
RevenueIncrease ¥ RMB 59.24 billion (2019)[2]
Increase ¥ RMB 13.79 billion (2019)[2]
Increase ¥ RMB 21.43 billion (2019)[2]
Total assetsIncrease ¥ RMB 112.12 billion (2019)[2]
Number of employees
18,129 (December 2017)[3]
DivisionsNetEase YanXuan
NetEase Cloud Music
NetEase Games (Thunder Fire)
NetEase Games (Interactive Entertainment)
NetEase D&R Center Lab
NetEase Wisdom Enterprise
NetEase News
SubsidiariesTitan Studio
Sakura Studio
Ouka Studio[4][5]
Grasshopper Manufacture
Nagoshi Studio
Quantic Dream
Jackalope Games
Jar of Sparks
GPTRACK50 Studio
NetEase Games Montreal
SkyBox Labs

NetEase, Inc. (simplified Chinese: 网易; traditional Chinese: 網易; pinyin: WǎngYì) is a Chinese Internet technology company providing online services centered on content, community, communications, and commerce. The company was founded in 1997 by Ding Lei. NetEase develops and operates online PC and mobile games, advertising services, email services, and e-commerce platforms in China. It is one of the largest Internet and video game companies in the world.[6] NetEase has an on-demand music-streaming service (NetEase Music). The company also owns several pig farms.[7]

NetEase video games include, the Westward Journey series, Tianxia III, Heroes of Tang Dynasty Zero, Ghost II,[8] Nostos and Onmyoji. NetEase also partnered with Blizzard to operate Chinese versions of their games, such as World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, and Overwatch from 2008 to 2023.[9][10][11]


The company was founded in June 1997 by Chinese entrepreneur Ding Lei, and grew rapidly due in part to its investment in search engine technology.[12] In 2012 the company's official English name was changed from, Inc to NetEase, Inc.[13]

Early in the company's history, top executives quit amid possible ad revenue misreporting[14] and buy-out talks with i-Cable Communications and others were reported.[15]

In 2008, the domain attracted at least 1.8 million visitors annually by 2008 according to a survey.[16] In 2010 the site was the 28th most visited site in the world according to Alexa's internet rankings.[17] NetEase's official website address is This was attributed to the past when Chinese internet users had to dial "163" to connect to the internet, before the availability of broadband internet.[18][19] NetEase is the largest provider of free e-mail services in China with more than 940 million users as of 2017. In addition to, the company also runs, and more.[20]

The company also operates a news website at[21] along with an associated app.[22] In 2022, Riot Games sued NetEase over alleged copyright violation concerning Riot Game's Valorant.[23][24]

Expansion and acquisitions[edit]

NetEase launched their first Western Headquarters in August 2014, bringing one of the largest tech companies in China to the US.[25] In January 2020, NetEase discussed secondary listings with the Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing.[26]

In 2018 NetEase invested US$100 million into Bungie for a minority stake in the company and a seat on its board of directors.[27] In December of the same year NetEase invested in New Zealand developer A44 (Formally known as Aurora 44),[28] and it sold its comics business to Bilibili.[29] In 2019 NetEase obtained a minority stake in Quantic Dream for an undisclosed investment.[30]

In June 2020 NetEase established a Japanese studio called "Sakura Studio" to develop next-generation console games.[31][32]

NetEase acquired Grasshopper Manufacture from GungHo Online Entertainment in October 2021, incorporating the developer within their NetEase Games division.[33]

In May 2022, NetEase opened its first US studio in Austin, Texas. It is called Jackalope Games, and is led by Jack Emmert, a veteran of massively multiplayer online role-playing games who worked on titles including City of Heroes, Neverwinter, Star Trek Online, and DC Universe Online. They will work on PC and console games and operate independently from NetEase.[34]

Toshihiro Nagoshi, Daisuke Sato, along with their former Sega employees established a new studio called Nagoshi Studio, which will also be a part of their subsidiary.[35]

In August 2022, NetEase announced the acquisition of Quantic Dream after the 2019 minority investment done in the company. After this, the studio will become a subsidiary part of its parent company and will help NetEase objective to have more console game releases.[36]

In October 2022, NetEase announced the establishment of GPTRACK50 Studio, a development company focused on console releases and led by former Capcom producer Hiroyuki Kobayashi as the president.[37]

In January 2023, it was announced NetEase had acquired the Canadian studio, Skybox Labs.[38]


The company has a history of partnerships with other companies. In 2008, Blizzard Entertainment partnered with NetEase to bring some of their games to the Chinese market.[39] Both NetEase and Blizzard announced the suspension of most game services within Mainland China by January 2023 due to the expiration of current licensing agreement. [10] According to NetEast's statement on November 17, 2022, Overwatch 2, Diablo III, World of Warcraft, StarCraft, Hearthstone, and Heroes of the Storm will no longer receive service in mainland China on January 23, 2023 and will not be renewed. [11]

In April 2012, NetEase began testing a restaurant recommendation mobile app called "Fan Fan".[40][41] In 2017 NetEase made an agreement with the American company Marvel Comics to develop a comic based on a Chinese superhero. In addition 12 comic copies by Marvel would be released online, such as The Amazing Spider-Man, Captain America, and Guardians of the Galaxy.[29]

The company collaborated with to provide Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) in China.[42] In 2014, NetEase launched an online course platform with educational content.[43]

Chinese government regulation[edit]

In October 2020, the Cyberspace Administration of China ordered NetEase to undergo "rectification" and temporarily suspended certain comment functions after censors found "inappropriate" comments on its news app.[44]

Gamers trying the new release of Speedy Ninja at PAX 2015


NetEase publishes many games, including Fantasy Westward Journey, Cyber Hunter and Identity V.

Year Title Developer Publisher Notes
2001 Fantasy Westward Journey NetEase NetEase
2002 Westward Journey Online II NetEase NetEase
2015 Revelation Online NetEase NetEase
2017 Rules of Survival NetEase NetEase Discontinued on June 27, 2022
2018 Identity V NetEase NetEase
LifeAfter NetEase NetEase
2018 Creative Destruction NetEase NetEase Discontinued on June 27, 2022
2019 Cyber Hunter NetEase NetEase
Sky Thatgamecompany NetEase Publisher in China only
Marvel Super War NetEase NetEase
Super Mecha Champions NetEase NetEase
2020 Marvel Duel NetEase NetEase
2021 Ace Racer NetEase NetEase
Naraka: Bladepoint 24 Entertainment NetEase
The Lord of the Rings: Rise to War NetEase Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
2022 Diablo Immortal NetEase, Blizzard Entertainment Blizzard Entertainment
Hyper Front NetEase, BattleFun Games NetEase
Lost Light NetEase NetEase
TBA Racing Master Dahua Studios, Codemasters
Tom and Jerry: Chase
Harry Potter: Magic Awakened
Once Human
Where Winds Meet Everstone Studio NetEase

Licensed online games[edit]

  • Three-year agreement to license Blizzard's title Overwatch in PRC[45]
  • Agreement to license Mojang's Minecraft and Minecraft: Pocket Edition in China[46]
    • Operated the Chinese third-party Minecraft Hypixel server (which shut down)[47]
  • Will assume the publishing of EVE Online in the Chinese market starting in October 2018[48]


  1. ^ "IR Contacts NetEase, Inc".
  2. ^ a b c d "NetEase Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2019 Unaudited Financial Results (PDF)". 26 February 2020.
  3. ^ "Investor FAQs". Archived from the original on March 22, 2019. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  4. ^ "CREATIVE DESTRUCTION Trademark of HONG KONG NETEASE INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT LIMITED Serial Number: 87884773 :: Trademarkia Trademarks".
  5. ^ "Creative Destruction on Steam".
  6. ^ "Tencent leads the top 25 public game companies with $10.2 billion in revenues | GamesBeat".
  7. ^ Bao, Zhiming; Jia, Denise (September 21, 2019). "Chinese Gaming Giant NetEase to Raise More Pigs". Caixin. Retrieved 2019-09-24.
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  16. ^ us Data Only (2011-10-26). "". Archived from the original on 2011-08-13. Retrieved 2012-08-17.
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  23. ^ "Riot Games Has Sued Chinese Game Company Netease for Copyright Infringement – Valorant 'Copy'". Victor Marquez. Retrieved December 9, 2022.
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  28. ^ "AURORA44 LIMITED (4672299) Registered". New Zealand Companies Office. December 17, 2018.
  29. ^ a b Zen Soo; Zheping Huang (13 December 2018). "Chinese gaming giant NetEase sells comics business to rival Bilibili, retains rights to Marvel series". South China Morning Post. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  30. ^ McWhertor, Michael (January 29, 2019). "Quantic Dream receives investment from NetEase to develop next-gen games". Polygon. Retrieved January 29, 2019.
  31. ^ [NetEase Games has today announced the establishment of 🌸"Sakura Studio"🌸 ..] (press release), NetEase, 5 Jun 2020, archived from the original on 2022-02-26
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External links[edit]

  • Official website Edit this at Wikidata
  • Business data for NetEase: