By Josh Ye
HONG KONG (Reuters) – The chief executive of China’s Bilibili Inc has taken over direct supervision of the company’s gaming department, according to an internal email seen by Reuters, as the Alibaba-backed company looks to boost revenue growth.
The human resource department of Bilibili, best known for its YouTube-like video-sharing platform, issued an email last Friday informing employees that those in its gaming department will report to Chen Rui, the company’s CEO, and no longer Zhang Feng, a senior vice president at the company.
Local media first reported the news over the weekend, sending Bilibili’s shares up about 10% in Hong Kong on Monday as investors interpreted it as an effort by Bilibili to refocus on its gaming business, which had been an important revenue generator for the company but has struggled in recent years.
When Bilibili went public on the Nasdaq in 2018, gaming accounted for about 80% of its total revenue. Its most famous title at the time was strategy game Fate/Grand Order. But Bilibili has been struggling to find new hits over the years while other Chinese companies including NetEase and miHoYo continue to gain ground.
Bilibili’s gaming revenue declined 15% in the quarter ended June this year, accounting for about 21% of its total revenue.
The company has long struggled to turn a profit despite having more than 300 million monthly users on its video platform.
Its share price has fallen more than 90% from its June 2021 peak to $11.71 as of Monday.
(Reporting by Josh Ye; Editing by Mark Potter)