[Interview] Webedia: “other acquisitions are to come in Europe” announces Véronique Morali

by bold-lichterman

Frenchweb: Webedia is landing in force in the video games segment. The media group that you chair acquired the heavyweight of the sector, Jeuxvidéo.com, created in 1997, for 90 million euros last June. You then bought Millenium.org, as well as the IGN licenses for France and Brazil. What’s your strategy?

Véronique Morali, Chairman of the Board of Webedia and Fimalac Développement: Webedia operates in entertainment, and we want to become leaders in several verticals. This is already the case for the “cinema” vertical, with AlloCine and the negotiations we have started with Cinema side, the “kitchen” vertical, with 750g and The Academy of Taste, and the “lifestyle” segment with PurePeople, PureTrends, Terrafemina

Jeuxvideo.com, Millenium.org and IGN’s licenses allowed us to perfect good coverage of the segment ” gaming Which is one of the fastest growing industries on the Internet. We reach casual gamers with IGN, regular gamers with Jeuxvideo.com – which is also one of the biggest discussion forums with 300,000 to 400,000 posts per day – and experienced gamers, who participate in competitions, with Millenium.org. These are three iconic sites.

All activities will be grouped together in Levallois-Perret. Our new headquarters will allow us to go even further, with the opening of our Gaming House which will host numerous esports competitions.

What are the synergies with the other titles of Webedia?

The first synergy is commercial with the pooling of our expertise. Our network offers a common commercial approach for all of our sites and responds to the strong demands of our customers, in particular in mobile, social Web, video and programmatic.

The second synergy is technological. Our 170 engineers operate, in France or abroad, for the group. However, for the editorial, each editorial staff remains dedicated to its pole.

What are your business and marketing objectives for your video games division, especially internationally?

Webedia already has assets in Brazil, the Middle East, Spain, Turkey and Germany. We want to continue like pole pheasants gaming the spearhead of Webedia’s internationalization in the coming years: other acquisitions are to come in Europe, we are studying several targets.

On the marketing side, the profile of the players is not at all what we think. Video games are very intergenerational, with communities that were born very early. So there are young people, but also a lot of people in their forties with a strong purchasing power. Game publishers are therefore natural advertisers, but they are complemented by other companies interested in this community. In the end, we anticipate sales growth of 20% to 30% in 2015 for all of our video games activities.

The takeover of Jeuxvideo.com by Webedia has raised some concerns. What message are you sending?

We want to send a positive message. It makes sense for us to regroup the sites of our division gaming. Moreover, the twenty people who make up the Millenium.org team, based in Marseille, join us in their entirety. And the new headquarters where we are moving, in Levallois-Perret, will be a formidable demonstrator of all expertise: a video studio, e-sport competitions with the Gaming House….

YouTube, Twitch, bought by Amazon for $ 970 million, Dailymotion Games more recently … New players have landed in recent years in the video game segment. How will Webedia cope in this new, highly competitive environment, particularly in journalistic and editorial terms?

On Jeuxvideo.com, there is a very strong community which exchanges on the forum. The editorial aspect focuses more on tutorials, advice … There is therefore a different understanding of journalism.

Internet users and advertisers want video; we are therefore giving ourselves the means to offer them on the pages of all our sites. This is one of our greatest ambitions for 2015. Webedia is very well configured to capture the major trends accompanying our verticals: this is already the case for video tutorials produced in the studio for the kitchen segment or for discussions. spontaneous and interactive on Jeuxvideo.com.

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