Ask Dave Taylor: Tech and Business


Glimmers of the virtual economy: Nexon's $250 million Kart Rider

I'm just fascinated by an article in BusinessWeek entitled Dude, where's my digital car? It's about Korean gaming company Nexon Corporation and its wildly popular Kart Rider [Korean language site]. Why's it interesting? Because much more so than Sony's Everquest and other online virtual games, Kart Rider is free, phenomenally popular and makes Nexon millions of dollars every month!

I know what you're asking: If it's free, where's the revenue stream coming from?

What a great and obvious question! The answer is that Nexon has figured out how to apply the Razor Blade theory of marketing to online gaming, in a spectacular way. The Razor Blade theory, you might recall, is that you should give away the razor so you can sell the blades.

In this context, Nexon allows Koreans -- and remember that about 75% of the Korean population have broadband connectivity -- to play the multi-player cartoon racing game for free.

The money comes from...

Continue reading about Kart Rider at The Intuitive Life Business Blog.