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Editor’s note: This article is from the micro-channel public number “technology showcase” (ID: kejixinzhi), Author: Wei Yuqi, 36 krypton release authorized.
In 2014, Tencent, which has become the “king of games” in China, launched a MOBA game called “Heroes of Heroes”.The subsequent development of this game with its own halo was somewhat unsatisfactory, and finally had to go back and rebuild, changing the mode from 3V3 to 5V5, and the name became “Glory of the King”.
However, at this time, the ending of “Glory of the King” depends on the performance of his compatriot, “Super God of the People”, which was highly praised at that time.
The ending of the story is that “Glory of the King” has become a national mobile game, and “Super God of the People” has failed. The reason for this result is certainly related to the different strategies adopted by the two, but the deciding factor is actually Darwin’s “Evolution”-the fittestsurvive.
Taking the market as a testing ground, which product runs faster, Tencent’s internal resources will be inclined to whom, and then this product will enter a stronger and stronger cycle.This practice of applying “survival of the fittest” to two or more products on the same track within the company, allowing the market to decide whether to continue its life, is nicknamed “horse racing” by some.
Zhang Xiaolong’s WeChat and Photon’s stimulating battlefield are all the same. The results of the three are also surprisingly consistent. The winners after the “horse racing” not only enjoyed the tilt of Tencent’s resources, but also became the first in the industry.And this is not the first time that Tencent has “horse raced” its products, nor will it be the last.
The previous “horse racing” was only limited to Tencent’s internal, although there is no external precedent, but this does not mean that this road does not work, especially when it comes to the game industry.After holding the first two tiger teeth and betta in the game live broadcast platform, the outside world has become increasingly louder about Tencent’s promotion of the merger of the two.
Judging from the financial reports of the first quarter of this year, both Douyu and Huya not only have highly similar businesses, but the gap is gradually narrowing. This may become a key factor in the merger of the two. If they fall in love, they will become Tencent ’s next”Horse racing” masterpiece?
Fighting fish, tiger teeth, getting closer
On May 26th, Betta released its first quarter financial report as of March 31, 2020. Just a week ago, Tiger Tooth, which has always been the head of the betta, also released its first quarter financial report this year.The immediate feeling of putting these two financial reports together is that the boundary between the two live broadcast platforms has become increasingly blurred.
From a business perspective, the revenue structure of the two is the same, divided into two parts, live broadcast, advertising and others.
Specifically, Huya’s revenue from the live broadcast business in the first quarter of this year was 2.275 billion yuan (RMB, the same below), an increase of 46.5% year-on-year, and the proportion of total revenue was still high, reaching 94%; Douyu live broadcast in the first quarterBusiness revenue was 2.113 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 56.0%, and it accounted for 92% of the total revenue.
In fact, the two have been highly similar in the live broadcast business for a long time. Taking the fourth quarter of last year as an example, the revenue of the Huya live broadcast business was 2.344 billion yuan, an increase of 62.7% year-on-year, accounting for95%; Betta’s revenue from live broadcast business is 1.89 billion yuan, an increase of 84.1% year-on-year, accounting for 92% of total revenue.
In terms of advertising and other businesses, the performance of Betta and Huya are also very similar.
In the first quarter of this year, the revenue of Huya Advertising and other businesses was 137.5 million yuan, an increase of 74.0% compared with 79 million yuan in the same period last year; the revenue of this part of the fighting fish business was 165 million yuan, compared with the same period last year135 million yuan increased by 22.2%.
In the fourth quarter of last year, the revenue of Huya Advertising and other businesses was 121 million yuan, an increase of 92.1% compared with 63.1 million yuan in the same period last year, and the revenue of this part of Betta was 170.4 million yuan, compared with 132.1 million in the same period last year.The yuan increased by 29.0%.
The high degree of similarity in business also makes the revenue of the two affected by the same factors.
In the explanation of the growth of the live broadcast business, Douyu said, “It is mainly due to the increase in user payment rate, the improvement of the monetization efficiency of the partition, and the introduction of the anchor task PK system.” Huya ’s description in this regard is similar to that of Douyu, “Thanks to the increase in the average cost of paying users and the number of paying users. ”
The same is true of advertising and other businesses. Douyu ’s explanation for the growth of this business is, “The increased brand awareness of the company and the increase in demand from game manufacturers.” Huya also said that this business can achieve 74% growth, Mainly benefited from higher demand brought by more diversified advertisers, new advertising distribution platform and stronger brand awareness.
In addition, judging from the financial reports of Betta and Huya in the first quarter of this year, the gap between Betta and Huya in business is highly similar, and the gap between them is gradually narrowing.
In terms of revenue, Huya continues to lead, but the gap with Betta is gradually narrowing.
Huya’s total revenue in the first quarter was 2.412 billion yuan, which was higher than the 2.278 billion yuan of Betta.This is closer to the performance of the two in the fourth quarter of last year. In the fourth quarter of last year, Huya’s revenue was 2.467 billion yuan, and Betta was 2.06 billion yuan.
The trend that the gap between Betta and Huya is gradually narrowing is not the same as the performance of revenue growth, net profit and users in terms of revenue.
In the first quarter of 2020, Huya’s revenue increased by 47.8% year-on-year; it was lower than Betta’s 53.0%. In the fourth quarter of last year, the revenue growth rate of the two was 64% and 77.8%, of which Huya’sThe first quarter-on-quarter decline in growth rate was the key factor that led to a narrower revenue gap between Betta and Huya than in previous quarters.
In terms of net profit, Huya is lower than Douyu, with net profit of RMB 171.2 million in the former and RMB 254.5 million in the latter.
In terms of users, Huya maintained a consistent advantage in the first quarter of this year. Its mobile MAU reached 74.7 million, an increase of 38.6% year-on-year, and Betta was 56.6 million, an increase of 15.3% year-on-year; in the fourth quarter of last year, the MAU of bothThey were 61.6 million and 54.4 million, with year-on-year growth rates of 21.5% and 29.3%, respectively.
In terms of paying users, Betta’s performance is better than that of Huya. In the first quarter of this year, Betta’s paid users reached 7.6 million, an increase of 26.2% from 6 million in the same period of 2019; Huya is 6.1 million, compared with last year.The increase of 13.0% compared with 5.4 million in the same period.
In terms of user payment levels, although Tiger Tooth is still higher than Betta, it has shown a downward trend.
Huya’s ARPPU (average user revenue) for the quarter was 372.9 yuan, a decrease of 87 yuan compared to the previous quarter; Betta’s ARPPU for the quarter was 278 yuan, which steadily improved and narrowed the gap with Huya.
Merge “speed up”?
The results of the game live broadcast platform after the war show that if you want to stand out, you must have two conditions, game resources and strong live broadcast operation capabilities.
The former is a hard currency in the industry, whether it is the tiger teeth and betta that landed last, or the once glorious panda, it is inseparable from the blessing of game resources.Therefore, dealing with Tencent has become a required course for live broadcast platforms.
Judging from the current situation, the relationship between Tencent, which controls hard currency, and Huya and Douyu is becoming more and more subtle.
According to the Form 20-F file submitted to the US Securities and Exchange Commission in April this year, Tencent has now become its second largest shareholder, holding 37.2% of the shares.
Huya’s shareholding structure has also changed. In an announcement issued on April 3, Huya stated that Tencent formally issued a notice letter to Huya and Huanju Group, saying that it had exercised its equity and purchased 16523819 shares of Huya Class B common stock.The total purchase price is approximately $ 262.6 million.After the transaction is completed, Tencent will hold 36.9% of Huya’s shares and become its largest shareholder, and its voting power will be increased to 50.1%.With both Tencent Holdings coming, it is speculated that Tencent will promote the merger of Douyu and Huya.
Unlike other companies whose merger control eventually leads to mergers, the significance of Douyu and Huya to Tencent does not depend on how many shares they own.
According to the precedent that Tencent often uses the “horse racing” mechanism to determine the life and death of the product in the direction of the game, the process of the development of Betta and Huya from independent development to being controlled by Tencent is actually the same as “The King of Glory” and “National Super God”.The “horse racing” that takes place is very similar.
On the one hand, fighting fish and tiger teeth will be valued by Tencent, the most important point is that the game has always been Tencent ’s strategic focus, and this will not change for a long time in the future, and Tencent in this regardHis son Penguin has a big gap with Douyu and Huya and can’t compete with them.So in this crucial circuit, betta and tiger teeth become the only high-quality targets worth Tencent’s shot.
The difference between this and “Glory of the King” and “Super God of the People” is that these two products are internally incubated by Tencent, and the betta and tiger teeth are external, but as mentioned above, the two are the key to the game trackThe location is enough for Tencent to ignore this, just as it took over the reading some time ago.
In other words, the biggest factor driving the merger of Douyu and Huya is not that Tencent owns two or more shares, but that they are already in a key position in the gaming industry.Not long ago, Douyu CEO Chen Shaojie also answered this question at the financial analyst meeting. “The question of the merger of Douyu and Huya mainly depends on the decision of major shareholder Tencent, but it has nothing to do with Tencent’s increase in Huya.”
On the other hand, the difference between Tencent and All-God is only after the winners are divided into winners. In the competition between Betta and Tiger Tooth, there is no hugeThe winner of the advantage.On the contrary, judging from the financial reports of the two, the gap between them has become smaller and smaller.
This brings an inevitable problem. The competition between the two parties with sufficient food and grass in the future will inevitably become more intense in terms of game resources and anchors. For Tencent, which already controls both parties and has game resources in hand, noIt is different from right and left.
Judging from Tencent’s actions, it has also realized this.”LatePost” reported last year that Tencent IEG established the Game Live Broadcasting Business Department. One of its main tasks is to balance the competition among the three companies: Douyu, Huya and Penguin, and control the overall consumption.
Therefore, if it is said that standing at a key position in the game track is the biggest factor prompting Tencent to promote the merger of the two, then the gradual narrowing of the gap between the two will undoubtedly speed up the process.
In addition, the ever-changing competitive landscape in the field of game live streaming also adds a touch of uncertainty to the changes in the relationship between Tencent, Betta and Huya.After all, whether it is the “Houlang” B station, the “old iron” fast player, or the byte bounce that said this year to form a team of thousands of people in the game live broadcast, it is not a simple opponent.
In general, whether considering the industry competition or resource allocation, the days of fighting fish and tiger teeth sitting on a dinner table may not be far away.

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