ByteDance plans to close its Nuverse gaming brand, letting go hundreds of employees, reported Reuters, citing sources.

The restructuring, which marks ByteDance’s withdrawal from mainstream video gaming sector, comes following a review of the business, the Chinese company told the publication.

In a statement, ByteDance representative said: “We regularly review our businesses and make adjustments to centre on long-term strategic growth areas. Following a recent review, we have made the difficult decision to restructure our gaming business.”

Sources said that ByteDance will now work on ways to pull out of games that have already been released and would instruct staff to halt unreleased projects by December.

Hundreds of workers are expected to be impacted by the decision, with some informed about it over the weekend.

The sources also claimed that the technology company behind video sharing platform TikTok had no intention of returning to the $185bn video gaming industry.

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By GlobalData

ByteDance’s retreat will not impact casual games that are available on TikTok and the casual gaming brand Ohayoo, which has games on Douyin, TikTok’s sister app in China.

The launch of Nuverse in 2019 by ByteDance was largely regarded as a significant step towards international gaming and a strategic decision to counter domestic rival Tencent.

As part of a larger structural overhaul, ByteDance officially recognised Nuverse as one of its six business units in 2021, but Nuverse’s performance has been inconsistent.

“Marvel Snap” is among Nuverse’s best-known games and other titles include “One Piece: The Voyage” and “Crystal of Atland”.

Earlier this month, reports emerged that ByteDance is considering sale of gaming studio Shanghai Moonton Technology (Moonton).

ByteDance acquired Moonton in 2021, and its potential divesture forms part of efforts to focus on core business by streamlining operations.

The Chinese company is also restructuring Pico, its virtual reality headset unit, which could lead to substantial layoffs.