PUBG creator Krafton reportedly in crisis – Salary freeze, reduced work from home

Krafton, the South Korean game developer behind the PUBG IP, is reportedly facing a financial crisis as the world grapples with a looming recession. In an internal communication program called the “Krafton Live Talk,” CEO Changhan Kim announced that it was freezing salaries for some “organization leaders,” and reducing work from home.

Krafton facing economic difficulties

CEO Kim announced three things at the Krafton Live Talk. This includes a salary free for heads of organizations, a reduction of work from home, and the strengthening of the publishing capacity of the company.

The gaming industry appears to no longer be recession-proof as Krafton isn’t the only company struggling. Microsoft’s 343 Studios, Bethesda and even Riot Games have announced layoffs over the past few days.

Luckily, Krafton hasn’t announced layoffs but the crisis is a worrying sign for the company. This announcement also comes less than two years after the company reportedly became the best-paying gaming firm in South Korea.

South Korean dev’s stock in trouble as The Callisto Protocol fails to hit expectations

As the company faces the crisis, its stock hasn’t escaped scrutiny. The next big thing for Krafton after releasing the battle royale title New State Mobile in 2021 was The Callisto Protocol. The survival horror action game was released on Dec. 2, 2022, but has reportedly failed to live up to expectations.

Krafton expected the game to sell five million copies since its release, but until now has only managed to ship two million copies. As a result, the company will likely fail to hit that number.

The Callisto Protocol

This has led to a slight fall in the value of the stock, which has already been struggling since its IPO back in Aug. 2021. The stock has fallen more than 60 percent from its listing price.

Krafton’s stock also made headlines when it issued an IPO – for all the wrong reasons. The shares were listed on Aug. 10, 2021, after a $3.8 billion IPO which was one of the largest in South Korea. With many analysts calling it an overvaluation of the company, Krafton listed at 9.9 percent lower than the IPO price and has continued to fall since then.

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