There is perhaps no entrepreneur more broadly berated than Kim Kardashian, but the sex tape starlet-turned-multimedia mogul can’t seem to make a bad business move.
And while much has been said about her latest chart-topping venture, a mobile app entitled Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, the numbers don’t lie.
The game, in which players create a cartoon avatar and climb the fame ladder from the E-list to the A-list by negotiating various industry players and taking on different jobs, has been called “disturbing” by Stephen Colbert and “capitalism stripped of its remaining niceties and applied to the unique vapidity of Hollywood social life” by The Atlantic.
Fair enough. But in its latest earnings call, the game’s maker, Glu Mobile, said that the app had catapulted revenues to an all-time high, reports The New York Times.
Not only did it earn $1.6 million within its first five days in the app store (while free, players can purchase add-ons including energy, clothes and hairstyles), but analysts estimate that the game is on track to make over $200 million a year. Kardashian herself is rumored to take home a 45 percent cut of all sales.
Due in large part to Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, “We now expect to generate more revenue in the second half of 2014 than we did for the entirety of 2013,” said Glu’s CEO, Niccolo de Masi. The company’s other best-selling games include Deer Hunter 2014 and Eternity Warriors 3.
De Masi added that, while the narrative of the game as it stands is infinite, the company is eyeing different localized versions and updates that will correlate with developments in Kardashian’s own life.
While seething response amid astronomic sales may weave a counterintuitive tale, this isn’t Kardashian’s first winning foray into tech -- making it harder and harder to disparage her oft-mimicked shrewdness as a commercial force.
In 2009, Kardashian co-founded ShoeDazzle, a subscription-based accessories e-tailer that raised $60 million in venture capital and was eventually acquired by JustFab.